The CDPP was established under the Director of Public Prosecutions Act 1983 and began operations on 8 March 1984. The Office is under the control of the Director, who is appointed for a term of up to 7 years.
Previous Directors of the Office of the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions are:
Sarah McNaughton SC (2016 – 2022)
Judge of the Supreme Court of New South Wales 2022 –
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.
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 also included an appellate practice in intermediate appellate courts across the nation and in the High Court of Australia.
Ms McNaughton has decades of 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.
On 2 September 2022 Ms McNaughton left the CDPP and on 10 October 2022 she was appointed as a judge of the Supreme Court of NSW.
Robert Bromwich SC (2012 – 2016)
Judge of the Federal Court of Australia 2016 –
Additional Judge of the Supreme Court of the Australian Capital Territory 2016 –
Commissioner of the Australian Law Reform Commission 2019 – 2020
Senior Counsel, NSW Private Bar 2009 – 2012
Barrister, NSW Private Bar 1998 – 2009
In-House Counsel, Commonwealth DPP 1995 – 1997
On 17 December 2012 Mr Robert Bromwich SC was appointed as Australia’s 7th Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions.
Mr Bromwich was a barrister at the New South Wales Private Bar for 11 years before being appointed Senior Counsel in 2009. Prior to going to the Bar, Mr Bromwich was a lawyer, Senior Assistant Director and In-House Counsel with the CDPP.
Mr Bromwich holds a Master of Laws from the University of Sydney (1993) and a Bachelor of Economics, Bachelor of Laws from Macquarie University (1984).
On 25 February 2016, the Attorney General, Senator the Hon George Brandis QC, announced the appointment of Mr Bromwich as a Judge to the Federal Court of Australia, commencing on 29 February 2016.
Christopher Craigie SC (2007 – 2012)
Judge, District Court of NSW 2012 –
NSW Public Defender 1994 – 2002
Deputy Senior Public Defender 2002 – 2007
Mr Craigie was admitted as a Solicitor in 1976 and as a Barrister in 1980. He was appointed as Senior Counsel in 2001. Mr Craigie was appointed as a NSW Public Defender in 1994, and held the appointment of Deputy Senior Public Defender 2002 – 2007.
Mr Craigie’s term as Commonwealth DPP commenced on the 13 October 2007.
On 15 October 2012 Mr Craigie was sworn in as a judge of the District Court of NSW.
Damian Bugg AM QC (1999 – 2007)
Chancellor of the University of Tasmania 2006 – 2012
President of International Society for the Reform of Criminal Law 2003 – 2008
Tas. DPP Director 1986 – 1999
Recipient of Centenary Medal 2003
Awarded Member of the Order of Australia in 2005 (AM).
Damian Bugg AM QC was admitted to the Bar of the Supreme Court of Tasmania in 1969. He was a Senior Litigation Partner in the Hobart law firm Dobson Mitchell and Allport when he was appointed the first Director of Public Prosecutions for Tasmania in July 1986. He took silk in 1994.
Mr Bugg has been President of the Bar Association of Tasmania, Chairman of the Legal Assistance Scheme and a Member of the Council of the Law Society of Tasmania. He was a Member of the Council of the Australian Institute of Judicial Administration for 9 years and is currently a Board Member of the Canadian based International Society for the Reform of Criminal Law. He chaired the Electronic Recording Committee which implemented the program of video recorded Police interviews in Tasmania in 1987, and established and chaired the Forensic Science Services Committee in 1988. He has written and spoken about Victims Rights, Pretrial Disclosure, Committals and Procedural Reform.
In 1998 Mr Bugg was made a Fellow of the University of Tasmania and appointed Chancellor in 2006.
On 2 August 1999 Mr Bugg was appointed the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions and held this position until 12 October 2007.
Brian Martin QC (1997 – 1999)
Acting Judge of the Supreme Court of Western Australia 2012
Chief Justice, NT Supreme Court 2004 – 2010
Judge, Supreme Court SA 1999 – 2003
Brian Ross Martin QC was admitted to legal practice in Adelaide in 1970.
Mr Martin was appointed as an assistant Crown Prosecutor in Adelaide in 1974 and the Senior Crown Prosecutor in December 1982 until May 1985. He was appointed as a Queen’s Counsel in 1984 and in 1991 was appointed as Senior Counsel assisting the Royal Commission into WA Inc.
Mr Martin was appointed as the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions in 1997, and held this position until he was appointed as a Judge of the South Australian Supreme Court.
He was appointed as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the Northern Territory in January 2004.
Michael Rozenes QC (1992 – 1997)
Michael Rozenes QC was admitted to practice in Victoria in 1971. He was entered on the roll of Barristers in 1972, and took silk in 1986.
From 1972 to 1976 he had a general criminal and common law practice and from 1977 to 1991 he practised exclusively in the criminal jurisdiction with a specialisation in complex taxation, corporate and appellate criminal cases.
Mr Rozenes was appointed as the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions in December 1991, with effect from 1 February 1992.
He has been a member of the Victorian Bar Council, Criminal Bar Association and the Victorian Bar Ethics Committee.
Mark Weinberg QC (1988 – 1991)
Chief Justice Supreme Court of Norfolk Island 2005 – 2008
Non-resident Judge, Supreme Court of Fiji 2003 – 2008
Additional Judge, Supreme Court of the A.C.T. 2003 – 2008
Judge, Federal Court of Australia 1998 – 2008
Judge, Victorian Court of Appeal 2008 – 2018
Mark Samuel Weinberg QC was admitted to practise in NSW in 1974, in Victoria in 1975 and his name was entered on the roll of barristers and solicitors of the High Court in 1979.
In 1975, he joined the academic staff of the University of Melbourne, where he held various positions in the Faculty of Law, culminating in Dean of the Faculty from 1984 – 1985.
Mr Weinberg was appointed Queen’s Counsel in Victoria in 1986 and in NSW in 1987. He was the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions from 1988 until 1991.
Ian Temby QC AO (1984 – 1988)
Life member of the NSW Bar Association
Commissioner, Royal Commission into the Finance Broking Industry 2001 – 2002
Foundation Commissioner of ICAC (NSW) 1989 – 1994
Commissioner, WA Legal Aid Commission 1978 – 1981
Awarded Officer in the Order of Australia in 2004 (AO).
Ian Douglas Temby QC was admitted to legal practice on 23 December 1966 and joined Perth law firm Northmore Hale Davey and Leake.
In 1972, Mr Temby co-founded the Legal Advice Bureau.
He went to the Bar in Perth in 1978 and was appointed a Queen’s Counsel on 16 July 1980.
Mr Temby is a past President of the Law Society of WA, and of the Law Council of Australia, the peak national body for lawyers. He was appointed the first Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions in 1984.
In 1989 he was appointed the first Commissioner of NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) and held the position until 1994.