MEDIA RELEASE: Australian-First Police Museum Showcases Investigative Triumphs

Australia’s first policing museum will open in Canberra in 2023 after receiving $4.4 million in funding from the Morrison Government drawn from proceeds of crime.

Showcasing exhibits such as the Australian Federal Police’s (AFP’s) investigative triumphs over the past 30 years, the Museum of Australian Policing will include Christopher Skase’s INTERPOL Red Notice and property seized in Western Australia from the sect responsible for the deadly Tokyo nerve gas attack.

Home Affairs Minister Karen Andrews said the new attraction, to open near the National Museum of Australia, is one of many initiatives being funded by proceeds of crime to help law enforcement agencies and communities prevent crime across Australia.

“Since becoming the Minister for Home Affairs, I have authorised the Confiscated Assets Account to fund AFP-led projects for law enforcement, community safety and border security,” Minister Andrews said.

“It’s the first Museum of Australian Policing in the country and will showcase the history of state and territory law enforcement, plus the AFP,’’ she said.

“The general public and tourists will be able to see exhibits from some of the most significant police operations in our nation’s history - the investigations led by the AFP not only captured the attention of Australians, but the world.”

Senator for the ACT Zed Seselja welcomed funding for the new Canberra attraction near the National Museum of Australia, which attracts about 600,000 visitors a year.

“This Liberal-National Government has continued to deliver for our institutions and for Canberra,” Senator Seselja said.

“We’ve invested an additional $80 million in the National Gallery, $500 million in the Australian War Memorial, $41.9 million to save at risk collections at the National Film and Sound Archive, as part of the largest investment in Canberra in a generation.”

“The Museum of Australian Policing will be another reason for Australians and international tourists alike to visit and spend time in Canberra, and joins the National Holocaust Museum and the National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Precinct as new institutions supported by this Government.”

Exhibits will include:

  • The door to the Aum Shinrikyo sect laboratory. The sect was responsible for the 1995 gassing of Tokyo subway in which 12 people died and 5500 were injured. The sect purchased a rural station in Western Australia in 1993 to conduct nerve gas testing;
  • The drug boat from AFP Operation GENTLE. The fiberglass boat, seized in 1998, was carrying 225, 1kg blocks of cocaine sandwiched between the hull and the decking. At the time, the cocaine seizure was the largest in Australia;
  • Fragments (painted panel) from the Sofitel hotel that was destroyed in the 2004 Boxing Day tsunami;
  • Christopher Skase’s INTERPOL Red Notice-INTERPOL’s highest international level of alert issued during an international manhunt for the Australian business man wanted for fraud and embezzlement;
  • The AFP diving team’s diving suits and rescue equipment from the 2018 Thailand cave rescue of the junior football team and their assistant coach;
  • Forensic evidence retrieved from the 2002 Bali bombing, including a drinks’ slip from Paddy’s Bar on the night the incident took place, fabric from the suicide vest, pieces of signage from the street outside the Sari Club, and an Irish flag retrieved from Paddy’s Bar. AFP Forensics, together with their international partners was instrumental in identifying the explosives and suicide bombers, whose act of violence killed 202 people, including 88 Australians and;
  • The 1974 Ford Falcon XB ACT Policing pursuit car. It remains in its original condition and is often used for AFP graduations and ceremonies.

Once criminal assets are confiscated and liquidated under the Proceeds of Crime Act 2002, the proceeds are then placed into the Confiscated Assets Account and redistributed by the Government to support crime prevention and law enforcement programs and initiatives.

Since 2013, the Coalition has provided funding of more than $209 million under the Act, to Commonwealth law enforcement agencies. Under the Coalition Government, funding to the Australian Federal Police has also increased to over $1.7 billion.

Only the Morrison Government will ensure strong support for our law enforcement agencies to keep Australians safe.

[ENDS] 

 

The Hon Karen Andrews MP 
Minister for Home Affairs

Senator the Hon Zed Seselja
Senator for the Australian Capital Territory