March 13, 2013
Kingaroy resident and former Special Branch police officer Barry Krosch has been giving evidence this afternoon at the Parliamentary Crime and Misconduct Committee inquiry into the release and destruction of Fitzgerald Inquiry documents.
The former CJC officer, who has been researching the Special Branch as part of a post-graduate degree at Griffith University, said he had found his own surveillance logs and the names of targets among documents accidentally released by the State Archives.
He said the documents, which previously had a 65-year restriction on them, were released to him in 2012 after they had been reclassified with a 20-year restriction.
Mr Krosch said he alerted the CMC by email, fearing many of the targets named would not have been aware they were under surveillance, and the early release of the logs could have put the officers who undertook the surveillance at risk.
Speaking to southburnett.com.au this evening, Mr Krosch said anyone who had typed “Krosch surveillance” into the State Archives online search engine in May 2012 would have gained access to all his logs from 1988, and found out the names of every surveillance target.
This has now been blocked off.
Mr Krosch served with the Queensland Special Branch for about 10 years.
For many years he was bodyguard to Premier Sir Joh Bjelke-Petersen before being seconded in September 1987 to look after Tony Fitzgerald after Mr Fitzgerald and his family had received threats.
From January 1988, Mr Krosch lived at Mr Fitzgerald’s house as his “minder”. He also helped to set up the Fitzgerald Inquiry surveillance unit.
Mr Krosch gave evidence to the parliamentary inquiry via videolink. He was represented by Kingaroy solicitor Andrew Kelly.