Tuesday, October 15, 2019

They finally got the despicable Punchard

<i>His fellow cops tried to protect him but justice has prevailed in the end</i>

A Queensland police officer who leaked a woman's address to her violent ex-partner has pleaded guilty to computer hacking.

Senior Constable Neil Glen Punchard is being sentenced on Monday after pleading guilty to nine counts of using a restricted computer in Brisbane Magistrates Court.

He disclosed personal information about the woman and her partner to her former partner, a long-time friend of Punchard's, over a one-year period from 2013.

Crown prosecutor Angus Edwards said it was a "complete breach of trust" by Punchard, who had done the "exact opposite" of the role of a police officer - to protect.

"(He) put at risk somebody who was involved in an acrimonious separation," Mr Edwards said.

Punchard was charged in late 2018 after a series of "erroneous" decisions by police not to prosecute, Mr Edwards told the court.

Two police investigations cleared him before the Crime and Corruption Commission overturned those decisions.

Last month, Punchard failed in a bid to have the charges thrown out on a technicality.

He argued the criminal investigation against him was tainted by the use of an interview he was forced to give during internal disciplinary proceedings, in which he made admissions.