WA Tracking Device installed on our Car by Local Business - Can we sue?

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4 February 2015
Hi, not sure if this is in the right section.... extremely long tale, but the short of it is - an employee of a local business operated a tracking & listening device that was planted on my husband's car.

Police charged the employee of the local business and he was subsequently fined.
In his statement to Police, he said he installed the tracking & listening device due to an outstanding account owed to the business.
I'm not sure if he is an owner, part-owner or just an employee.

There is no outstanding account... in fact my husband does not know the person or been in their shop! I believe it was done as a favour to our ex-landlord who is trying to take us to court for a years rent due to break lease. The person that installed the device is said landlord's POA. He had access as he works near my husband. POA has been charged also.

My question is - do we have a case for compensation or can we sue the business and or individual for damages. I'm not litigious generally, however this has affected the whole family, my 12yo daughter was present when we discovered the device taped under the car and thought (with its blinking lights) that it was a bomb - we've had a pretty rough 6 months following the incident.

Any advice appreciated.

John R

Well-Known Member
14 April 2014
Hi @ChicoP
The right to sue for invasion of privacy is presently unclear in Australia. See: The prospect of a tort for invasion of privacy arises again | Clayton Utz and A common law action for breach of privacy in Australia? | ALRC.

The Office of the Australian Information Commissioner's website also has good resource on "Photos and surveillance" at: Photos and surveillance | Privacy topics | Privacy| Office of the Australian Information Commissioner - OAIC.

  1. Does POA mean Power of Attorney or something else?
  2. What was the local business employee charged with and found guilty of?
  3. Do you have a copy of the local business employee's police statement?


4 February 2015
Hi John, thanks for the reply. POA - yes Power of Attorney. The person is either the manager or a part owner of the business, charged with unlawful use of a tracking device, both charged with the same offence & fined. One got a spent conviction (guessing due to work).
No I dont have a copy of their statements as the dectective in charge is away on long service leave atm.
He did tell us exactly what was in the statement though, and he stated that he did that because there is an outstanding account with the business - which is wholly false.

Should I report the business to consumer affairs? Am I able to disclose this pubically? Seems pretty wrong that they get a slap on the wrist for causing so much trauma, I would hope they dont continue with such underhanded practices with other people or customers as well.