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Department of Defence Hot Issue Briefs

In keeping with improved accountability within the Department of Defence, from 20 January 2012, Hot Issue Briefs submitted to the Minister for Defence by the Department of Defence will be publicly released.

On 20 January 2011, the Minister for Defence released 116 Hot Issue Briefs from the period 14 September 2010 to the present, as listed in the table below. Summary information about the briefs is provided below.

Together with the 138 Hot Issue Briefs released under Freedom of Information provisions on 9 January 2012, this places on the public record 245 of the 248 of Hot Issue Briefs submitted to Minister for Defence Stephen Smith. There are selected briefs not being released at this time as they would prejudice ongoing matters. They will be released once those matters are finalised.

In the future, Hot Issue Briefs to the Minister for Defence will be released below in PDF Icon Portable Document Format, usually within one week after submission to the Minister.

Frequently Asked Questions

HIB 997 has now been released

Latest Hot Issue Briefs

Group HIB No Date Document Description
Air Force 933 Nov 25, 2011 Arrest of RAAF member on child sex charges
Air Force 951 Dec 21, 2011 Aviation fuel contamination RAAF Base Amberley
Air Force 952 Dec 23, 2011 Aviation fuel contamination RAAF Base Amberley (First and Final Update)
Army 959 Jan 31, 2012 Army Reserve Member Charged with Indecent Assault on a Minor
Army 958 Dec 15, 2011 Alleged sexual and indecent assault
Army 956 Jan 19, 2012 Theft at School of Infantry, Singleton
Army 955 Jan 19, 2012 Suspension of Army Black Hawk Operations
Army 954 Jan 04, 2012 Army Reserve soldier arrested and charged with nine counts of alleged sexual assault relation to offences involving a minor
Army 937 Dec 06, 2011 Alleged sexual assault - RMC Garrison
Army 935 Dec 01, 2011 5 Black Hawks forces landing - Normanhurst, Fraser  Park and Canton Beach
Army 934 Nov 29, 2011 Army member jailed for indecent dealing with two minors
Army 931 Nov 25, 2011 Army member arrested for alleged indecent assault on a minor
Army 928 Nov 23, 2011 Army member arrested for indecent dealings with minors
Army 927 Nov 22, 2011 Alleged sexual assault of Army cadet by another Army Cadet at a training activity in (Redacted Text)
Army 926 Nov 20, 2011 Murder investigation involving a Townsville-based
ADF married couple
Army 912 Nov 11, 2011 (Redacted Text) based soldier charged with several offences, including rape
Army 772 Jan 20, 2011 Death of an Army soldier in Brisbane
CDG 724 Nov 02, 2010 Pathfinder Publication
CIOG 773 Jan 23, 2011 Release of Defence Restricted Network (DRN) user details to The Australian newspaper
CIOG 755 Dec 04, 2010 Disbursement of monies from Defence fundraising efforts
CIOG 932 Nov 25, 2011 Possible corruption allegations being made against Defence in relation to dealings with Rivercorp
CJOPS 953 Jan 03, 2012 Alleged act of sexual indecency in HMAS Parramatta
CJOPS 939 Dec 08, 2011 Allegation of assault against contracted bar staff at Larrakeyah Warrant Officer and Sergeants Mess, assault against Military Police and Insubordination
CJOPS 918 Nov 03, 2011 Footage taken by camera crew of intoxicated sailor fighting with Darwin police
CJOPS 906 Nov 11, 2011 Allegation of sexual assault on (Redacted Text) members
CJOPS 865 Aug 24, 2011 Photographs taken by sailor that have the potential to attract media or parliamentary interest – Larrakeyah Barracks 24 Aug 2011
CJOPS 855 Jul 25, 2011 USN motor vehicle accident near RAAF Base Amberley – Talisman Sabre 11
CJOPS 812 Apr 07, 2011 Distribution of pornographic video images in Solomon Islands allegedly involving a (Redacted Text) member
CJOPS 799 Mar 13, 2011 Forces entertainment tour pepper spray incident in East Timor
CJOPS 786 Mar 01, 2011 Parent of HMAS Stuart sailor claims allegations of victimisation
CJOPS 777 Feb 04, 2011 Probable assault of ADF member in Yokuska Japan
CJOPS 766 Dec 24, 2010 HMAS Melbourne alcohol related incident in Aqaba, Jordan
CJOPS 746 Nov 21, 2010 Discovery of anabolic steroids in HMAS Melbourne
CJOPS 743 Nov 17, 2010 Motor vehicle accident whilst driving under the influence of alcohol – 17 Nov 10
CJOPS 740 Nov 15, 2010 Lightning strike on AP-3C aircraft in Darwin
CJOPS 727 Nov 03, 2010 Transit security element 58 member arrested 03 Nov 10
CJOPS 721 Oct 29, 2010 Navy officer arrested in Singapore
DMO 717 Oct 01, 2010 Tiger Armed Reconnaissance Helicopter Landing in Emerald due to a gearbox fault indication
DMO 735 Nov 10, 2010 JSF Fatigue Test Failure
DMO 736 Nov 10, 2010 JSF Fatigue Test Failure - Update
DMO 744 Nov 18, 2010 Loss of an MU90 Lightweight Exercise Torpedo in the Navy's Western Australia Exercise Area
DMO 745 Nov 19, 2010 Loss of an MU90 Lightweight exercise torpedo in the Navy's Western Australia exercise area
DMO 747 Nov 21, 2010 Recovery of the MU90 Lightweight exercise torpedo that was lost in the Navy's Western Australia exercise on 1 8 November 201 0
DMO 751 Nov 30, 2010 Closure of Raytheon Office at RAAF Base Richmond
DMO 754 Dec 04, 2010 JASSM Live Fire
DMO 769 Jan 07, 2011 Changes to the JSF Program
DMO 771 Jan 20, 2011 Serious incident involving aircraft on Australian KC-30A Multi-role tanker transport program
DMO 779 Feb 09, 2011 Civilian employee of US Navy Submarine Combat System Program Office charged with bribery
DMO 828 May 17, 2011 HAZCHEM incident at AWD Svstems Centre, Adelaide
DMO 867 Aug 26, 2011 Light Weight Torpedo translation tender
DSG 919 Nov 4, 2010 Defence Force Discipline ACT 1982 summons for production of Defence personnel files - including medical, psychological and counseling
DSG 910 Oct 29, 2011 Grounding of Qantas Fleet
DSG 905 Oct 18, 2011 Lavarack Barracks Townsville - Crocodile Relocation
DSG 892 Oct 04, 2011 Pay issue impacting Defence Reservists
DSG 876 Sep 08, 2011 Helicopter accident vicinity Shoal Water Bay Training Area
DSG 875 Sep 08, 2011 UXO in vicinity of Geraldton, WA - Update
DSG 873 Sep 06, 2011 UXO in vicinity of Geraldton, WA 
DSG 862 Aug 19, 2011 Suspicious package incident at Lavarack Barracks Townsville
DSG 852 Jul 20, 2011 Protestors - Gallipoli Barracks, Enoggera - 20 Jul 11
DSG 846 Jul 05, 2011 Protest action at Swan Island
DSG 835 May 28, 2011 Personal information released by Defence APS recruitment
DSG 834 May 24, 2011 National Archives of Australia has informed Defence that a Defence file with drawings of Keswick Barracks has been lost in a taxi
DSG 823 May 06, 2011 Changes to partners in DLA Piper including Melanie McKean
DSG 816 Apr 14, 2011 Canberra bomber (Static Display) Aviation Turbine Fuel incident at RAAF Wagga
DSG 814 Apr 12, 2011 Complaint of lack of support to bereaved ADF family
DSG 801 Mar 24, 2011 Suspicious package found under the seat of a motor vehicle at Defence National storage and Distribution Centre, Moorebank, NSW
DSG 800 Mar 21, 2011 A contractor to Defence has suffered a suspected heart attack while on-site at Columboola, QLD
DSG 794 Mar 09, 2011 Child of ADF member allegedly inappropriately taken from a Service residence at Defence Establishment Berrimah
DSG 788 Mar 04, 2011 Gas leak at RAAF Base Williamtown - 04 Mar 11
DSG 787 Feb 24, 2011 3 inch mortar bomb struck by civil contractors at Gallipoli Barracks, Eiloggera, QLD
DSG 759 Dec 09, 2010 Delay in pay for Defence personnel banking with credit unions including Australia Defence Credit Union
DSG 749 Nov 25, 2010 Delay in pay for Defence personnel banking with the National Australia Bank
DSG 742 Nov 17, 2010 ADF member claims theft of Jewellery during Defence relocation
DSG 711 Sep 21, 2010 Suspicious package at Queanbeyan Archives and Mail Centre (QAMC)
DSG 708 Sep 15, 2010 UXO disposal tomorrow - Heathcote Road, Sydney
DSTO 921 Nov 10, 2011 Apparent suicide at DSTO Edinburgh's South Gate
DSTO 908 Nov 11, 2011 Potential theft of Restricted /Commercial-in-Confidence document from Military Communication Information Systems Conference, Canberra
I and S 941 Dec 09, 2011 Referral of (Redacted Text) staff member to Canberra (Redacted Text)
I and S 902 Oct 18, 2011 South Australian Police warrant resulting in arrest of a person and seizure of weapons - possible ADF Nexus
I and S 900 Oct 18, 2011 South Australian Police warrant resulting in arrest of a person and seizure of weapons - possible ADF Nexus
I and S 798 Mar 11, 2011 Recovered USB stick - update
I and S 796 Mar 10, 2011 Recovered USB stick
Navy 957 Jan 20, 2012 AUSCDT ONE investigate/Dispose of Suspected WWII Sea Mine
Navy 950 Dec 20, 2011 Outcome of Defence Force Magistrate Trial for a HMAS Stirling Sailor
Navy 949 Dec 16, 2011 Death of a Junior Sailor
Navy 946 Dec 14, 2011 Outcome of General Court martial- LCDR Jones - Update
Navy 945 Dec 13, 2011 Outcome of General Court Martial - LCDR Jones
Navy 943 Nov 16, 2011 Death of RAN Member Ashore in Cambodia - Update One (325/11)
Navy 942 Dec 09, 2011 Outcome of General Court Martial for Sailor at HMAS Stirling
Navy 940 Dec 08, 2011 Naval Officer - Court Martial verdict
Navy 936 Dec 04, 2011 Navy Seahawk Helicopter Unserviceable at Coffs Harbour Airport
Navy 930 Nov 24, 2011 Complaint of inappropriate behaviour by Navy Sailor in Relation to His (Redacted Text)
Navy 925 Nov 18, 2011 RAN Band WA Detachment Assistance at Scene of Motor Vehicle Accident
Navy 924 Nov 18, 2011 RAN Band WA Detachment Assistance at Scene of Motor Vehicle Accident
Navy 922 Nov 15, 2011 Allegation of inappropriate behaviour by a Member of RAN Recruit School Staff
Navy 944 Nov 15, 2011 Duplicate of Navy HIB000922
Navy 914 Nov 09, 2011 HMAS Huon - Alleged Assault
Navy 913 Nov 11, 2011 Death of RAN Member ashore in Cambodia
Navy 907 Nov 11, 2011 Death of sailor onboard HMAS Toowoomba in Mumbai
OSCDF 806 Apr 04, 2011 Release of ASPI Report: 'Reliable Partners-Strengthening Australia-Timor Leste Relations'
OSCDF 809 Apr 07, 2011 Foreign Military Student very seriously ill
OSCDF 821 Apr 28, 2011 (Redacted Text) attending Australian Maritime College sent home for misconduct
OSCDF 836 May 27, 2011 Release of ASPI Report : Staying the Course: Australia and Maritime security in the South Pacific
OSCDF 843 Jun 28, 2011 (Redacted Text) has applied for an Australian Protection Visa
PSP 726 Nov 03, 2010 Indigenous employment development course participant critically ill
PSP 929 Nov 24, 2011 Reserve payslips not available for pay day 24 November 2011 
VCDF 720 Oct 29, 2010 ADFA officer cadet has been charged by the AFP for theft
VCDF 723 Nov 01, 2010 ADFA officer cadets were apprehended by the AFP for theft
VCDF 728 Nov 14, 2010 Civilian fatality at Defence establishment Orchard Hills - 4 Nov 10
VCDF 734 Nov 09, 2010 ADFA adventure training incident (February 2010) - Legal proceedings 15- 16 November 2010
VCDF 737 Nov 10, 2010 UNSW@ADFA - Session Two 2010 - Publicity relating to staff member withholding academic results 
VCDF 752 Dec 02, 2010 UNSW@ADFA - Session Two 2010 - Publicity relating to staff member withholding academic results
VCDF 761 Dec 10, 2010 Investigation into alleged use of illicit substances HMAS Kuttabul
VCDF 764 Dec 16, 2010 ADFA adventure training boating incident (February 2010) - Verdict in criminal trial of boat coxswain - 21 December 2010
VCDF 804 Apr 01, 2011 Alleged video transmission of sexual activity at ADFA
VCDF 818 Apr 15, 2011 An ADFA officer cadet has allegedly been the victim of a physical and verbal assault
VCDF 827 May 14, 2011 Arrest of ADFA cadet 
VCDF 847 Jul 06, 2011 An ADFA officer cadet will attend ACT Magistrates Court 7 Jul 11
VCDF 866 Aug 25, 2011 Allegation that an international cadet at ADFA has attempted to use a camera enabled mobile phone device above a shower cubicle 
VCDF 870 Sep 03, 2011 ADFA cadet injured in canyoning activity
VCDF 885 Sep 22, 2011 Allegations of inappropriate behaviour by members of Australia's Federation Guard 
VCDF 920 Oct 29, 2011 Alleged assault at ADFA
VCDF 923 Nov 18, 2011 An ADFA officer cadet has attempted self harm
VCDF 947 Dec 16, 2011 APS Employee of (Redacted Text) arrested and charged with serious civilian offences - (Updated and Final Report)
VCDF 948 Nov 15, 2011 APS Employee of (Redacted Text) arrested and charged with serious civilian offences 

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What is a Hot Issue Brief?

A Hot Issue Brief provides initial and early advice to Ministers and Defence senior leaders on sensitive or complex matters or incidents that may require their immediate attention. Due to the immediacy of preparation of Hot Issue Briefs, the advice provided can sometimes prove to be inaccurate or require further clarification once the situation has stabilised.

Hot Issue Briefs do not represent the full and complete facts associated with an incident or issue. This should be borne in mind in reading Hot Issue Briefs.

Public Release of Hot Issue Briefs

The Black Review of the Defence Accountability Framework challenged Defence to enhance individual and collective accountability. Placing on the public record Defence's advice to the Minister for Defence on these issue - including instances of inappropriate behavior - is a part of that accountability.

From 20 January 2012, Hot Issue Briefs will be released on the Defence Website, usually within one week after submission to the Minister. The only exceptions to that rule will be individually and personally approved by the Secretary of the Department of Defence or the Chief of the Defence Force, and based solely on criteria that public release would:

In those circumstances, the Secretary or the Chief of the Defence Force will be required to set an expiration date on the information in that Hot Issue Brief, after which time the brief will be publicly released.

This approach is consistent with the key changes to the Freedom of Information Act 1982 that came into effect on 1 November 2010, and the Information Publication Scheme.

Redaction of Hot Issue Briefs

Hot Issue Briefs redactions are undertaken in accordance with the requirements of the Freedom of Information Act 1982, and are based on the removal of information that may:

Summary Information about the 116 Hot Issue Briefs released on 20 Jan 2012

Personnel Related

There are 58 HIBs on personnel related issues.

The breakdown is as follows:


There are 21 HIBs on defence capability related issues. These include: lost and stolen materiel; materiel deficiencies; materiel incidents such as fuel contamination; industry support incidents; and concerns about defence projects.


The remaining 39 HIBs cover a range of matters including: security breaches (ICT and base security); lost and stolen property; industrial action; Defence assistance to the community; occupational health and safety issues that include gas leaks, training incidents, crocodile relocation; and complaints about accommodation.

Status of Investigations

Sixty-seven of these incidents were reported to civil police or the ADF Investigative Service (ADFIS) for investigation and 3 were reported to the Defence Security Authority and relate to the potential theft of documents.

Of the incidents that were reported to civilian police or ADFIS, 15 are now closed and the remainder are either under investigation or waiting disciplinary or civil court action.

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