On 6 Dec 1984, under the "Director of Prosecutions Act 1984", the first Director of Prosecutions was appointed. On 1 Dec 1994, under s.3 of the "Statute Law (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act (No. 2) 1994", the name was changed to Director of Public Prosecutions, and at the same time the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions was formally established. The Office is an independent statutory office, created under law to be separate from government, to ensure that criminal prosecutions are free from improper influence or interference such as biases on race, religion, sex, national origin or political views, etc.
The main function of the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) is to prosecute criminal matters in the District and Supreme Courts, the Court of Appeal, the High Court of Australia and the Mental Health Review Tribunal.
Other functions include advising the Attorney-General on proceedings where mental illness is an issue, on legislative reform, and to possible appeals by the Police.
The Office also provides support services to victims of violent crime during the court process, litigating confiscation actions to retrieve the proceeds of crime, and preparing and prosecuting committal proceedings in the Brisbane Central and Ipswich Magistrates Courts (in complex matters).
The ODPP functions within the Department of Justice and Attorney-General's Criminal Justice Program. It consists of a Corporate Services Group, Regional Chambers (Cairns, Townsville, Mackay, Southport, Ipswich, Toowoomba, Beenleigh, Rockhampton, Maroochy), and Brisbane Chambers (Wakefield, Sturgess, Given, Sheehy, Haxton, Griffith, Mental Health, Confiscations).