Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Australia: Qld cop charged over leaked bash footage

No room for honest cops in Qld.

A Gold Coast police officer has been stood down and charged with misconduct following allegations he leaked footage of colleagues assaulting a handcuffed man three years ago.

The Queensland Police Service said on Friday Rick Flori, a 44-year-old sergeant with 25 years' experience, was the subject of an investigation "concerning allegations he accessed and released confidential information".

The police service said in a statement Flori had been charged with one count of criminal misconduct in public office and issued with a notice to appear in the Southport Magistrates Court on July 15.

He has been stood down on full pay but could lose his job over the January 2012 incident.

The leaked video shows Noa Begic, 21, being slammed face first into a concrete floor before being hit by officers using their knees, elbows and fists.

It also shows Mr Begic being punched several times after being put in the back of a police van, and a senior officer throwing a bucket of water on the concrete to wash away the man's blood.

Speaking outside Queensland Police Service headquarters on Friday, Flori thanked his supporters.

"I thank my family," he told reporters. "I've had multiple phone calls and text messages. I'm very grateful and I thank you all."

Australian Council for Civil Liberties president Terry O'Gorman says the case goes to the heart of the risks whistleblowers take.

Mr O'Gorman called on Police Minister Jo-Ann Miller to take a personal interest in the case.

"Queenslanders will say what sort of a system have we got where a video shows a number of police belting the hell out of a bloke," he told the ABC.

"They don't get charged, but the officer who leaks the video to the media gets charged."

Mr Begic said at the time he was arrested after a night out in Surfers Paradise and was assaulted repeatedly on the drive to the local police station and then later in the basement.

"They were making racist comments about me and then when we ended up in that basement I knew there was more on the way," he said.

Public nuisance charges against Mr Begic were ultimately dropped after then-Police Commissioner Bob Atkinson intervened.

The officers filmed carrying out the assault were subject to an internal police investigation, with two facing disciplinary action. They should have been fired

Original report here. (Via Australian Politics)

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