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Media Release - Michael Rowan (Operation Errigal)

Tuesday, 7 February 2023

Former NSW Police Force superintendent Michael James Rowan will serve an eight month prison sentence by completing an intensive correction order after a District Court sentence appeal today.

The former officer had appealed the severity of a Local Court prison sentence after he was charged for giving false evidence to the Law Enforcement Conduct Commission.

The LECC’s Chief Commissioner Peter Johnson SC noted the significance to the community of the Commission’s work in the matter.

“The LECC is responsible for promoting the integrity of the NSW Police Force.  For any police officer, and in particular a high ranking police officer, to give false evidence to the LECC strikes at the heart of the work that the Commission is entrusted to do,” he said.

District Court Judge Craig Smith SC confirmed Rowan’s conviction and sentence of eight months, and directed that the sentence be served as an intensive correction order after taking into account evidence about his mental health at the time of offending.

Judge Smith SC also imposed a condition that the former officer perform 100 hours of community service.

The conviction followed the Commission’s investigation into allegations Rowan had failed to declare conflicts of interest which arose from his relationships with other police officers. 

The Commission’s investigation found Rowan lied to the Commission about his contact with one of those officers during its investigation.

Rowan had been granted conditional bail to appeal his sentence before the District Court hearing today.

The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) conducted the prosecution after it advised that there was sufficient evidence to criminally charge Rowan.

The ODPP became involved after the Commission’s Operation Errigal report recommended seeking the advice of the ODPP to prosecute Michael Rowan for giving false evidence to the Commission during its investigation.

The Commission’s integrity investigation, Operation Errigal, into allegations against Michael Rowan can be found here.

LECC Media Contact: Rob Schell

Mobile: 0425 317 535

Email: media@lecc.nsw.gov.au