In mid-February, Fairfax Media reported that Human Rights Commission president Gillian Triggs received an offer to resign two weeks ahead of the publication of the Commission's critical report on the state of children in immigration detention. It was said that Attorney-General George Brandis also offered Triggs an unspecified new job.
It was not until this Tuesday when Triggs confirmed the rumors during a Senate hearing. Soon after, Dreyfus wrote a letter to Australian police requesting an immediate investigation.
"The attorney general's offer to an independent statutory officer of an inducement to resign her position as president, with the object of affecting the leadership of the Australian Human Rights Commission to avoid political damage to the Abbott government may constitute corrupt and unlawful conduct," Dreyfus wrote in a letter as quoted by The Guardian.
"This is shameful behaviour from a Government which cannot tolerate criticism… Instead of engaging with the substance of her criticism, Senator Brandis and his colleagues have instead resorted to personal smears against Professor Triggs," Dreyfus wrote.
Gillian Triggs was appointed as head of the Australian Human Rights Commission in July 2012 for a five-year term and can only be removed for bankruptcy or serious misconduct.
The Commission's inquiry into children in immigration detention, titled The Forgotten Children, was tabled mid-February. The report revealed that keeping children in prolonged detention has negative impacts on their mental health and development.
Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott rejected the Commission's recommendation for a broader public investigation into the matter.