The Forensic Services Group (FSG) has over 800 police and civilian staff to provide a state-wide specialist service to support criminal investigators, the community and the justice system through the provision of these services:
- Collection and analysis of exhibits at crime and incident scenes.
- Scientific analysis, interpretation of evidence and presentation of evidence to court.
- Identification of persons through fingerprints and DNA to assist in criminal, incident and coronial investigations.
- Identification of persons through criminal history to provide background information to the court to inform decisions.
- Criminal record and fingerprint based background checking to assist in placing the 'right persons' in the 'right places' for specific jobs, visas, adoptions, to name a few
- Provision of forensic intelligence to assist solving crime across boundaries; linking crime across different evidence types and chemical profiling of drug seizures.
Crime Scene Services Branch (CSSB)
The Crime Scene Services Branch provides a specialised technical crime scene support service to all Police throughout New South Wales regarding criminal, coronial and incident investigations. This is achieved by examining, assessing, recording and collecting physical evidence from scenes and items, facilitating scene and item examination by qualified experts, providing a range of advanced forensic research procedures and presenting the findings to Judicial Courts.
Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week attending crime scenes, fire scenes, vehicle collisions and to assist disaster victim identification; examine blood stain patterns; tool, shoe and tyre marks; make photographic comparisons and sketch plans.
In direct support of frontline police, the Crime Scene Services Branch manages the state via 2 metropolitan satellites located at Western Sydney and Sydney (including Chatswood), Scenes of Crime Officers working from Crime Scene Sections and various police stations, and 5 country zones managing a number of decentralised Crime Scene and Specialist Sections. Fingerprint and physical evidence services are provided from these Sections.
The Crime Scene Logistics Unit (CSLU) is responsible for maintaining the capability and ensuring that the CSSB is able to respond to Counter Terrorist incidents and explosion scenes. The CSLU also manages the roles involved within the Disaster Victim Identification process as well as maintaining a bulk store of equipment that may be required during a Disaster Victim Identification response.
Identification Services Branch (ISB)
The Identification Services Branch comprises four sections – Fingerprint Operations, Criminal Records, Specialist Support Section (which includes Forensic Ballistics, Forensic Imaging & Engineering Investigation) and Forensic Intelligence and Results Management.
Fingerprint Operations provides a professional fingerprint examination, comparison and identification service to the NSW Police, other law enforcement agencies and approved bodies through the utilisation of both manual and computerised fingerprint systems.
The Command receives searches, compares and records/identifies the fingerprints of persons charged and fingerprinted throughout NSW. The Branch maintains and updates the National Automated Fingerprint Identification System (NAFIS II), a computerised fingerprint system designed for the searching, identification and recording of both 'charge' fingerprint and latent fingerprint impressions within NSW.
Criminal Records is the central repository for all NSW criminal history information, which forms the basis of an on-line criminal histories computer system for police as well as a criminal histories support service to the Courts and other approved bodies.The Criminal Records Section also provides National Police Checking Services to NSW residents aged 16 years and above for visa, general employment, adoption, some occupational licensing, student placement's and for volunteers working in commonwealth funded aged care facilities.
Forensic Ballistics Investigation (FBIS), Forensic Imaging, and Engineering Investigation also form part of the Branch providing a specialist service to the Crime Scene and Police Investigator including Interactive Scene Recording and Presentation System (ISRAPS), photogrammetry, vehicle identification and examination, ballistics and firearm examination and disposal, and video support.
The Forensic Intelligence and Results Management unit (FIRM) encompasses three (3) main teams, Results (DNA) Management, State Prisoner Testing Team (SPTT) and Forensic Intelligence. These three teams collectively provide on-going support to investigators throughout the state ensuring the accuracy, integrity, and timely dissemination of DNA results and the collection of forensic procedures from prisoners across the state.
The ISB provides operational police with identification information pertaining to latent fingerprints developed at crime scenes; maintenance of the computerised criminal histories system; comprehensive technical evidence and advice relating to ballistics and firearms; state wide support in capturing incident scenes and with video and digital images; the mechanical examination of any form of motor transport; and the management of DNA results and forensic procedure training and testing.
Strategic Forensic Support Branch (SFSB)
The Strategic Forensic Support Branch (SFSB) delivers timely, quality, innovative science, technology, systems and processes in support of the FSG Identification Services Branch (ISB), the Crime Scene Services Branch (CSSB) and front line policing. The branch also provides high level Executive support and advice concerning forensic science and technology.
The SFSB exists to:
- Bring together all FSG projects under one overarching centralised Unit enabling the streamlining of processes and practices; this will ensure that the FSG Command enjoys a uniform project standard with full clarity of mission and architecture;
- Identify potential business improvement opportunities in processes and systems to support and streamline FSG and front line Policing;
- Integrate experienced training and quality-focused staff with CSSB personnel ensuring the fast transition of good, sustainable, scientific practices to CSSB and ISB, underpinned by sound training standards, compliance and evidence-based research;
- Renew the focus on innovation and targeted research which will provide a valuable resource for the Executive, (particularly through the ICT Governance structure), highlighting emerging national and international science and technology (S & T) tools, trends risks and challenges, as well as opportunities for collaboration with other forensic and educational institutions;
- Provide and facilitate policy and legal services to assist and manage policy development and legal advice including that surrounding MOU agreements and procurement issues; and
- Limit duplication and maximise leverage off shared expertise and collaborative arrangements within an environment of financial constraint.