History in last 5 years
PFWG activities have included the refurbishment of forensic laboratories in Samoa, Tonga and Cook Islands; laboratory training; fingerprint training in PNG and the Solomon Islands; and a crime scene introduction course in Palau.
In 2012 PFWG introduced the Pacific Automated Fingerprint Identification System (PAFIS) to assist Pacific police in identifying possible offenders in criminal matters.
In 2014 forensic specialists from 10 Pacific Island countries progressed the development of forensic legislation for the Pacific. Also in 2014, 19 PFWG members completed a Cert IV in Crime Scene Examination course.
2015 PICP Members approved the Pacific Forensic Model Provisions as a guide for forensic law reform in the Pacific. These Provisions can be viewed in the publications section of this web.
Current Projects and/or Focus
The PFWG has a 2014-2015 annual business plan focusing on four goals to set the strategic direction:
- Acquisition and modernisation of equipment and ongoing support to achieve effective and efficient forensic capability;
- Police forensic facilities meet relevant standards and requirements;
- Police forensic services are staffed by appropriately qualified and trained staff; and
- Police forensic services are supported by relevant legislation, policies and operating procedures.
In September 2014, the Australian Attorney General’s Department released a Pacific Forensic Legislation Review. The review identified legal gaps in Pacific forensic laws and made a number of recommendations for a regional process to drive law reform. These recommendations were endorsed by PICP at 2014 annual conference and are currently being coordinated by Pacific Island Law Officers Network (PILON).