Phone: +612 9872 4924
Email: forensic at docexam.com.au
ABN: 67 734 176 776
I am a Forensic Document Examiner conducting a private practice from 2nd Floor, 835 Pennant Hills Road, Carlingford, New South Wales. My previous employment with the Australian Federal Police and the Department of Immigration, Local Government and Ethnic Affairs was in a similar capacity.
From November 1976 to October 1984 I was employed by the Australian Federal Police in the Document Examination Bureau. During my training I not only had the guidance of the Officer in Charge but I also had the benefit of the experience of the former Chief Document Examiner for the Government of Sri Lanka, who worked in this field for over 30 years. I have also worked with a former Examiner of Questioned Documents for the United States Department of Defence.
Between 1976 and 1978 I completed a two-year academic programme on document examination, which included the preparation of two research papers on the subject. During this time I acquired a relevant background in chemistry by undertaking a chemistry course conducted at the Meadowbank Technical and Further Education Centre. I also attended instructional programmes on typewriters at IBM Sydney and Wangaratta, Victoria as well as a light microscopy and photomicrography course held at Macquarie University.
During 1983 I was the Officer-in-Charge of the Document Examination Bureau over a period of 6 months.
From October 1984 to January 1989 I was employed by the Department of Immigration, Local Government and Ethnic Affairs as an Examiner of Questioned Documents and as Officer in Charge of the Regional Operations of the Document Fraud Section, Sydney.
During this period my duties had a greater emphasis towards examination of and reporting on security documents, travel documents and other supporting documents presented to the Department.
Simultaneously, I conducted a private practice as a Forensic Document Examiner until my resignation from the Department of Immigration, Local Government and Ethnic Affairs.
In 1986 I attended the Paper Knowledge Workshop conducted at Wesley Vale, Tasmania by the Australian Pulp and Paper Mills, whilst working for the Department of Immigration Local Government and Ethnic Affairs. In 1990 I attended a Typewriter Examination Seminar conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) at the Victorian State Forensic Laboratory, Macleod. During the same year I was a participant in a workshop on “Presenting Better Expert Testimony” conducted by a Law Professor from the Nova University, Fort Lauderdale, USA. The workshop was held in Adelaide. As an invited guest of the American Society of Questioned Document Examiners I attended their 1994 annual meeting held in Long Beach California. Part of this programme was a workshop on “Forged and Counterfeit Documents”.
In September 1994 I was one of two examiners selected to provide document examination services to the Independent Commission Against Corruption.
On the 16th July 2004 I qualified for the degree of Bachelor of Science from Macquarie University where my core area of study was statistics. I was admitted to this degree on the 27th September 2004. I am engaged to examine all manner of documents in most fields of document examination accepting instructions from solicitors, government agencies and corporations.
I have examined in excess of 70,000 documents in over 2000 cases encompassing all facets of document examination. In many of these matters I have been required to present expert testimony in both civil and criminal courts of various jurisdictions.
In the course of my 36 years in the field of forensic document examination, I have been continually instructed in and practised all areas of the subject including:
I have studied numerous textbooks and articles on the subject and I am progressively upgrading my reference library with new texts and articles to ensure that my knowledge of developments in this field is current.
The courts in which I have testified regarding questioned documents include:
In addition to these areas I have presented evidence before the Stewart Royal Commission, the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody and the Fitzgerald Commission of Inquiry.
Since 1979 I have lectured regularly on document examination. Initially, the lectures were to detective courses conducted by the Australian Federal Police.
On joining the Department of Immigration and Ethnic Affairs, I had the responsibility of both organising and conducting a more intensive programme of lectures on document fraud to officers of the Department, also officers in Customs, Department of Foreign Affairs and the Australian Federal Police. The aim of these lectures was to alert the officers in the detection of non bona fide documents.
I conduct lectures to the legal profession, government agencies and universities. In February 1991 I presented a lecture on document examination to law students undertaking a course subject titled "Scientific Evidence" at the Nova University, Fort Lauderdale, USA.
In 1984 I was accepted as a full member of the Australasian Society of Forensic Document Examiners Society after passing the examination conducted by the Executive of the Society. I was on the committee of the Executive of the Society from 1993 to 2000. Currently, I am Vice President of this Society and I have been in this position since 2007.
I am a corresponding member of the American Society of Questioned Document Examiners (ASQDE), having been admitted to that Society in August 2005. Since 1994, I have been a fairly regular attendee at annual meetings of the ASQDE. The last meeting I attended was in August 2011 and it was the 66th Annual Meeting held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
In 2006 I was also admitted to the status of Graduate Statistician in the Statistical Society of Australia, Inc.
I have prepared the following papers:
The first paper was presented to the Australian Police Scientific and Techniques Conference in 1979 and subsequently to the First Scientific Meeting of the Australian Society of Forensic Document Examiners in 1981. The second paper was presented to the Third Scientific meeting of the Australian Society of Forensic Document Examiners in 1983. Both papers were published in the Australian Federal Police Officers’ Association Journal in 1983. The third paper was presented at the 1991 Scientific Meeting of the Australian Society of Forensic Document Examiners.
An article I wrote on forensic document examination and presented to a Fraud Prevention Conference in 1992 was published in the July 1994 issue of the NSW Law Society Journal under the title of “Counterfeit, Forged and Altered Documents”. It has also been published in two parts in the New Zealand Northern Law News under the title of “Expert Evidence: The Trials of a Document Examiner” during September 1994.
I have researched and prepared a further two papers, the first titled “The Importance of Line Width Measurements in Discriminating Between Pencil Types” with Sigurbjorg Gudlaugsdottir and Associate Professor Julian Leslie of Macquarie University. This paper was presented to the 63rd Meeting of the ASQDE in Montreal, Canada during August 2005 and published in the Journal of the American Society of Questioned Document Examiners in December 2005.
The second research paper was titled “Limited Populations – Are They Feasible For Handwriting Examinations?” with Associate Professor Julian Leslie of Macquarie University. This paper was also presented to the 63rd Meeting of the ASQDE in Montreal, Canada during August 2005 and published in the Journal of the American Society of Questioned Document Examiners in June 2006.
I am currently preparing another paper for publication, being jointly written with Melanie Holt of the NSW Police titled “Are the opinions of Document Examiners being accurately interpreted by Jurors? A presentation of the results of this research was presented at the 66th Annual Meeting of the ASQDE in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.