Report a Commonwealth crime
The AFP has the jurisdiction to investigate, Commonwealth crimes (sometimes called federal crimes) and crimes that take place in the Australian Capital Territory.
On this page:
Commonwealth crimes are crimes that fall within the law-making responsibilities of the Australian government (sometimes called the Federal government).
State and Territory crimes are crimes that fall within the law-making responsibilities of State and Territory governments.
Knowing which crimes are Commonwealth and which are not can be confusing and complex. Below are some examples:
Examples of Commonwealth crimes - report these to the AFP
- Aircraft, airport and aviation crimes
- Child sex offences by Australians in foreign countries
- Cybercrime committed against Commonwealth Government departments or information systems of national significance
- Drug importation and exportation
- People smuggling
- Human Trafficking - including trafficking for slavery, organ harvesting, sexual, domestic and/or labour servitude and forced marriage
- Online Child Exploitation (child abuse material)
- Fraud against the Commonwealth government
- Theft from the Commonwealth government
- Assault on a Commonwealth official
- Threats against a Commonwealth official
Examples of State or Territory crimes – report these to your local police
- Cybercrime – including online fraud, such as eBay, and internet scams
- Drink driving
- Drugs - drug dealers and drug users
- Fraud - including online and overseas frauds and scams
- Home invasions
- Missing persons
- Rape or sexual assault
- Stalking - including online stalking
- Theft - including theft of mail once delivered
- Threats - including threats by phone, email, social networking sites, forums etc
- Traffic offences
Go to the ACT Policing website to find more information about crimes that take place in the ACT.
The AFP carefully considers all reports of Commonwealth crimes, however we do not have the resources to investigate every reported crime. We have to ensure we allocate our resources to the crimes which have the greatest impact to Australian society. The AFP's priorities are published on our web-site in our Case Categorisation and Prioritisation Model (CCPM). Visit How the CCPM is applied to read about how we make our decisions.
The AFP does not investigate:
- Civil matters. This includes:
- breach of contract
- faulty goods or services
- State or Territory crimes - even when the crimes have occurred in more than one State or Territory, or where the suspects live in foreign countries – these are still the responsibility of State or Territory police who can seek assistance from interstate or foreign law enforcement as appropriate. In order to refer an investigation to a foreign law enforcement agency it is necessary to report the matter to your local State or Territory police. Once your local police have exhausted all possible avenues within Australia they can refer the investigation overseas using Interpol Canberra. Members of the public cannot report crimes directly to Interpol or foreign law enforcement. You must report crimes to your local police first.
- Some types of Commonwealth crimes unless they have been reported to the responsible Australian Government department or agency first. These include:
- Crimes against an Australian agency or department, such as fraud against that agency or department
- When another agency or department has the expertise to assess the crime themselves.
The table below lists some common complaints and crimes and shows you where you should report them.
|Crime or matter||Where you should report it|
|State or Territory Crimes||In emergencies, Triple Zero - 000
For non-urgent matters, report to your local police
To provide information, call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000
|Complaints about an Australian government department or agency, including Courts and Magistrates||Report it to that department or agency first. If you are dissatisfied with the response you receive from the involved agency you can then raise your concerns with the Commonwealth Ombudsman.
If your complaint is about an AFP employee, read about the AFP's Professional Standards
|Complaints about your State or Territory police||Contact your local police to find out who investigates complaints in your State or Territory. Each State or Territory has a different agency responsible for investigating police complaints and allegations of corruption. If your complaint is about an ACT police officer, read about the AFP's Professional Standards|
|Centrelink or Medicare fraud
(Does not include scams)
|Call the Australian Government Services Fraud Tip-off line 131 524 or report it to Centrelink or Medicare via the Human Services website.|
|Cybercrime (including online fraud, such as eBay, and internet scams)||Report it to the Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Network (ACORN)|
|Family Court matters||Contact the Family Court via their website or phone 1300 352 000|
|Film piracy, including DVDs||Report it to the Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft|
|Immigration, citizenship and customs offences||Report it to Australian Border Force|
|Intellectual Property||Refer to IP Australia for advice.|
|International child abduction||Contact the Attorney-General's Department on 1800 100 480 or by email at [email protected]|
|Offensive content on the internet||Report it to the Australian Communication and Media Authority|
|Scams||Report it to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission via the SCAMwatch website
NOTE: Internet scams should be reported to the Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Network (ACORN)
|Spam email||Report it to the Australian Cybercrime Online Reporting Network (ACORN)|
|Taxation offences||Report it to the Australian Taxation Office|
|Theft of mail before it is delivered||Report it to Australia Post|
How do I report a crime to the AFP?
You can also post a written report to your nearest AFP office. Postal addresses for your nearest office can be found at the bottom of this page.
Have you included:
- Your name
- Your email address
- Your phone number
- Your address
- Times and dates
- Names of people, including middle names and dates of birth
- Facts about the crime
Call the AFP's National Switchboard on (02) 6131 3000 if you:
- need help reporting a crime
- have questions about whether you should report a crime to the AFP
You cannot generally report a crime by phone but we will be happy to assist you in making a written report.
After hours you can call the AOCC Watchfloor on (02) 6126 7777.
If you have information about possible signs of terrorism you should contact the 24 hour National Security Hotline on
1800 123 400.
If you would like to provide anonymous information about any crime (State, Territory or Commonwealth crimes) please phone Crimestoppers on 1800 333 000 or visit the Crimestoppers website.
Operations Monitoring Centre (OMC) contacts
|Location||Postal address||Phone number|
|ACT||AOCC Client Liaison Team
GPO Box 401
Canberra ACT 2601
|Ph: (02) 6126 7133|
Locked Bag A3000
Sydney South NSW 1232
|Ph: (02) 9286 4000|
PO Box 40445
Casuarina NT 0811
|Ph: (08) 8980 1300|
|QLD (Brisbane)||Coordinator OMC
PO Box 920
Spring Hill QLD 4004
|Ph: (07) 3222 1222|
PO Box 844
Cairns QLD 4870
|Ph: (07) 4044 6600|
PO Box 200
Kent Town SA 5071
|Ph: (08) 8416 2811|
GPO Box 485G
Melbourne VIC 3001
|Ph: (03) 9607 7777|
GPO Box 485G
Melbourne VIC 3001
|Ph: (03) 9607 7777|
PO Box 586
West Perth WA 6872
|Ph: (08) 9320 3444|
|Urgent After Hours||AOCC Watchfloor||Ph: (02) 6126 7777|