Former Tasmanian Attorney-General lodges complaint against Premier for potential breach of criminal code

         

Summary: Former Tasmanian Attorney-General Elise Archer has formally complained that Premier Jeremy Rockliff violated the state’s criminal code. Archer stepped down from Cabinet after Rockliff discovered private text messages she sent and deemed them inappropriate. Archer initially intended to resign from state parliament but changed her decision after receiving public support. Rockliff set a deadline for Archer to declare her intentions, resulting in her later announcement of resignation. Archer has now lodged a complaint with the Director of Public Prosecutions, alleging that Rockliff breached the Criminal Code Act. The DPP’s office has been asked to investigate the matter.

Former Tasmanian Attorney-General Elise Archer has filed a formal complaint against Premier Jeremy Rockliff, accusing him of violating the state’s criminal code. This development comes after Archer’s decision to step down from Cabinet following Rockliff’s discovery of private text messages she had sent. Rockliff deemed the content of these messages as unacceptable and requested Archer’s resignation. Initially, Archer expressed her intention to quit state parliament entirely. However, she reconsidered this decision after receiving public support.

With the possibility of an early election looming if Archer remained in parliament but did not guarantee confidence and supply, Rockliff set a deadline for Archer to declare her intentions. In response, Archer announced that she would be resigning later that day. Now, Archer has confirmed that she has filed a complaint with the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), alleging that Rockliff breached section 70 of the Criminal Code Act. However, she has chosen not to provide further comments on the matter.

Section 70 of the Criminal Code Act states that it is a crime to attempt to influence an MP in their duties or to induce them to be absent from Parliament through fraud, threats, or intimidation. The DPP has been contacted to determine if any laws have been broken and if an investigation should be conducted. The status of the complaint is currently unknown.

Rockliff, when questioned about the potential investigation, declined to comment on whether he would step down during the process. However, during a session in state parliament, he defended his actions and claimed that seeking clarification in such political circumstances was entirely within his rights. He emphasized that he did not instruct Archer to act in any specific way and only sought clarification about her intentions.

Tags: Elise Archer, Jeremy Rockliff, Tasmanian Premier, Criminal Code Act, Director of Public Prosecutions

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