On Wednesday the 11th of January 2023, the NSW ICAC released a statement declaring that the Operation Keppel report is unlikely to be available in the first quarter of 2023.
In the statement the complexity of the report and the necessity of addressing relevant issues in a careful manner were highlighted:
"Substantial parts of the report have been drafted. At the same time, it must be recognised that the report concerns complex matters of law and fact, two public inquiries which proceeded over 30 days, over 2,800 pages of transcript, 516 exhibits comprising approximately 10,600 pages and 957 pages of submissions (the last of which were received on 18 October 2022). It is necessary that the issues relevant to the investigation are addressed carefully."
This is reportedly the third time the report has been delayed and this places the public release of the report beyond the 2023 New South Wales state election on March 25th. The statement has been described as "unusually detailed" considering the commission's "usually secretive" operations. The statement also acknowledged the completion of reports for three other operations, Galley, Paragon and Tolosa, which may overlap with the review process of the Keppel Report.
What is Operation Keppel?
Operation Keppel was originally investigating former Liberal MP for Wagga Wagga, Daryl Maguire, reviewing evidence to determine if Mr. Maguire used his parliamentary position for personal benefit. The investigation grew to include former NSW Premier, Gladys Berejiklian, following her testimony which revealed a "close personal relationship" with Mr. Maguire, to ascertain if Ms. Berejiklian broke the public's trust for failing to report Mr. Maguire's conduct.