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Complaint against Borchers LCJ

On 24 July 2019, the CLANT Committee met and unanimously resolved to make a complaint to the Chief Judge of the Local Court of the Northern Territory against Borchers LCJ.

Details of the matters complained of had been first brought to the attention of CLANT several days previously by way of an article in Guardian Australia.  On 25 July 2019, Guardian Australia published a further report on the matter, stating:

The association is frustrated that the issue was ventilated in the public, rather than through official internal channels. [CLANT President Marty] Aust told Guardian Australia it showed the urgent need for a judicial complaints commission in the NT.  “The way in which this matter has come [to be] in the public sphere is particularly worrisome and what we want is for the NT government that the time is here to pass legislation that enacts an independent judicial commission or a structure for the investigation of complaints against judicial officers,” he said.

In 2016 and 2017, CLANT lodged similar complaints with the Chief Judge against the same judge. Both of of the prior complaints were substantially upheld.

CLANT has long advocated for the establishment of an independent body to oversee complaints against judges, as we noted here, in January 2018.