Criminal justice, police powers and mental health

Submission to the Senate Inquiry on the Criminal Code Amendment (Misrepresentation of Age to a Minor) Bill 2013 - February 2014

NSWCCL has made as submission to the Senate Inquiry on the Criminal Code Amendment (Misrepresentation of Age to a Minor) Bill 2013.

We make the same comments on proposed section 474.40(2) as we did on the corresponding section in the previous version of the Bill. As argued previously, intending to commit a crime is not itself a crime, and should not be made a crime. If crimes have occurred, they are what a person should be charged with. If they haven't, a person should not be charged for what he or she merely has in mind as a plan.

NSWCCL recommends that this Bill should be rejected.

Click here for the submission

Share

Mandatory sentencing for “one-punch” assaults causing death with drug and alcohol related factors

The NSW Council for Civil Liberties opposes the NSW Government’s proposal for mandatory sentencing for “one-punch” assault causing death with drug and alcohol related factors.

The proposed new laws will mean that persons found guilty of drug and alcohol fuelled “one-punch” assaults causing death will be subjected to a mandatory minimum sentence of 8 years in jail with a maximum of 25 years.  Mandatory sentences for “one-punch” assaults have already been enacted in West Australia and the Northern Territory.  

Read more
Share

State government misses historic opportunity to repeal 'dangerous' bail laws

The NSW Council for Civil Liberties today labelled the State Government response to the Law Reform Commission report on bail a “major disappointment”.

Read more
Share

Submission to the Select Committee on the Partial Defence of Provocation - October 2012

NSWCCL has made a submission to the Select Committee on the Partial Defence of Provocation.

The NSW Council for Civil Liberties reiterates its opposition to any significant changes to the existing partial defence in the absence of a compelling case to the contrary.

View the submission here

Share

Submission to the Criminal Law Review at the Department of Attorney General and Justice regarding the Inquiry into the right to silence of an accused person - September 2012

NSWCCL has made a submission to the Criminal Law Review at the Department of Attorney General and Justice regarding the Inquiry into the right to silence of an accused person

The proposed bill will abolish the right of an accused person to decline to answer questions by police without any adverse inferences being drawn in a subsequent trial by the prosecution or the court. To propose that silence implies guilt or prevarications is irrational and contrary to the fundamental principle of the presumption of innocence.

View the submission here

Share

Submission to the Joint Select Committee on Cyber-Safety regarding the Inquiry into Cybercrime Legislation Amendment Bill 2011 - August 2012

NSWCCL has made a Submission to the Joint Select Committee on Cyber-Safety regarding the Inquiry into Cybercrime Legislation Amendment Bill 2011

The submission raises a number of concerns, particularly the sharing of Australian information with foreign law enforcement agencies who may support torture/death penalty or may otherwise not employ appropriate protection and security measures concerning the highly sensitive and private nature of prospective data.

View the submission

Share

Submission to the Acting Director General at the Department of Attorney General and Justice regarding the statuatory review of the Graffiti Control Act 2008 (NSW) - August 2012

NSWCCL has made a submission to the Acting Director General at the Department of Attorney General and Justice regarding the statutory review of the Graffiti Control Act 2008 (NSW).

The submission questions the impact of harsh penalties such as imprisonment for a relatively minor offence, particularly on predominantly young perpetrators. It also addresses the Act's allowal of the removal 'graffiti' from private property provided that it is visible from a public place - this is an intrusion upon the owners right to property, owners should be free to paint their property or have it painted as desired without third party interference based on a subjective evaluation of the artwork/decoration.

View the submission here

Share

Submission to the Provision of alcohol to minors legislation - August 2012

NSWCCL has made a Submission to the Provision of alcohol to minors legislation.

The submission argues that the proposed amendments extend unnecessarily beyond merely ensuring adequate supervision of liquor supply, and may unreasonably criminalise benign activities such as religious rituals involving supply of liquor to minors.

View the submission here

Share

Submission to the review of Part Eight of the Crimes (Appeal and Review) Act 2001 - May 2012

NSWCCL has made a submission to the review of Part Eight of the Crimes (Appeal and Review) Act 2001

The legislation as presently embodied in Part 8 Crimes (Repeal and Review) Act 2001 (the Act) is contrary to the common law as it has developed over generations of cases here, in England and other common law countries. It is also in contravention of Article 14(7) of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

Australia has signed the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (‘the ICCPR’) and has made no reservations concerning double jeopardy or retrospectivity. Australia is therefore obliged ‘to respect and to ensure to all individuals within its territory...the rights recognised’ in the ICCPR, including the prohibitions against double jeopardy and retrospectivity.

NSWCCL proposes that the legislation be repealed.

View the submission here

Share

Submission to the Legal Committee of the NSW Legislative Council Inquiry into law reform issues regarding synthetic drugs - April 2012

NSWCCL has made a submission to the Legal Committee of the NSW Legislative Council Inquiry into law reform issues regarding synthetic drugs.

The submission discusses the proven inefficacy of drug prohibition. It also highlights the inability for persons without a chemistry background to reasonably interpret the legality of over 200 banned substances as outlined in Schedule 1 of the Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985 (NSW), making it extremely complicated for most people to understand what they are allowed to buy, possess or sell.

View the submission here

Share