Sarah McNaughton SC commenced a five year term as the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions on 16 May 2016. In May 2021, she was reappointed by the Attorney-General for a further two years.
Ms McNaughton has 33 years’ experience as a legal practitioner and holds a Bachelor of Arts (Hons), Bachelor of Laws (Hons) and Master of Laws from the University of Sydney. She was admitted as a solicitor in 1989, joined the New South Wales Bar in 1996, and was appointed Senior Counsel in 2011.
Prior to her appointment as Director, Ms McNaughton appeared as both prosecution and defence counsel in a number of complex criminal trials, developing specialist expertise in taxation offences, corporate crime, drug importation and terrorism. She appeared for the State of New South Wales at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse and was appointed Senior Counsel Assisting the Royal Commission into Trade Union Governance and Corruption. Ms McNaughton’s role as Director now includes an appellate practice in intermediate appellate courts across the nation and in the High Court of Australia.