Police issue warning about unauthorised radio transmissions at Melbourne and Avalon airports

This is a joint media release with Airservices Australia and the Australian Communications and Media Authority.
The Australian Federal Police has launched an investigation into 15 incidents of unauthorised radio transmissions with aircraft at Melbourne and Avalon Airports.

As a result of the unlawful interference with air traffic control broadcasts over several weeks, the AFP has today issued a call for public help for any information that will result in the identification and arrest of the person responsible.

There is no current threat to the safety and security of the travelling public as a result of these unlawful radio transmissions in the Melbourne area. Travellers do not need to change their plans.

The AFP’s head of Crime Operations, acting Assistant Commissioner Chris Sheehan said today that Airservices Australia and the AFP can reassure the public that there are appropriate procedures, processes and systems in place to ensure the safety of aviation operations at airports in Victoria and across the country, and for the travelling public.

“The AFP, Airservices, the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) and the aviation industry are all committed to ensuring the safety of the travelling public and we are treating this matter extremely seriously,” acting Assistant Commissioner Chris Sheehan said.

“These incidents are being thoroughly investigated by the AFP, with technical support from the ACMA.

“The airlines have been briefed to ensure the advice has been passed on to their pilots and to ensure appropriate measures are in place.

Airservices said at no time was safety jeopardised as a result of these calls, and Airservices is working closely with the airlines and the AFP.

Airservices is Australia’s air navigation service provider which provides safe, secure, efficient, and environmentally-responsible air navigation services to the aviation industry. Safety is Airservices’ highest priority. The ACMA uses a range of technologies and techniques to investigate and locate the sources of unauthorised or interfering transmissions across the radio frequency spectrum. Members of the public are reminded unauthorised transmissions on non-public channels are an offence under the Radiocommunications Act 1992.

The person responsible for these unauthorised transmissions faces up to 20 years imprisonment. Anyone with information about this matter is urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000. Information can be provided anonymously.

Media enquiries:
AFP National Media: (02) 6131 6333
Airservices Australia Media: 1300 619 341
ACMA Media: (02) 9334 7719

If it doesn't add up, speak up. Call the National Security Hotline - 1800 123 400.

Read the AFP Annual Report 2021-22

Australian Centre to Counter Child Exploitation - visit website

Policing and community news from the AFP