Law & Order

Police receive powers to compel offenders to hand over passwords

New laws which will allow police to demand computer and phone passwords from certain offenders could violate fundamental rights, a civil liberties group argues. Brisbane Times Felicity Caldwell Police Minister Mark Ryan introduced a new bill on November 29 which would allow police to demand passwords and access codes for electronic devices from reportable offenders where there was a suspicion that an offence had occurred. The law would cover reportable offenders who… Police receive powers to compel offenders to… Read More »

Fagin’s Law: New Victorian offence to target adults procuring kids to commit crimes

The Victorian Government has said it will introduce a new offence to target adults procuring children to do their criminal “dirty work”. ABC Attorney-General Martin Pakula said legislation would be introduced to State Parliament next year to see adult criminals facing up to 10 years’ jail for such behaviour. The new law has been dubbed Fagin’s Law, after the… Fagin’s Law: New Victorian offence to… Read More »

Young South Sudanese ‘constantly stopped’ by police, as community grapples with Apex stigma

Deng Maleek, a university-educated youth worker, was on his way to meet with police to discuss issues facing the South Sudanese community, when he was pulled over and asked to provide his registration papers. ABC Sarah Farnsworth The young South Sudanese man said the officers who stopped him implied he was an Apex gang member, an experience he described as not uncommon amongst his peers. “Young people of Sudanese background find… Young South Sudanese ‘constantly stopped’ by… Read More »

New laws ensure sexual assault victims’ private counselling remains private

Sexual assault victims’ private communication with counsellors will be unavailable for perpetrators to use in court under new laws. Brisbane Times Felicity Caldwell Attorney-General Yvette D’Ath introduced a bill on Thursday providing extra measures for victims of crime in Queensland. Under the changes, a sexual assault counselling privilege will… New laws ensure sexual assault victims’ private… Read More »

Let’s speak about, not shout about, abortion

Heaven is filled with boys and girls, who though unwanted by their earthly parents, have been welcomed by a Father who is committed to their eternal good and joy. On Line Opinion Murray Campbell Every year in Australia 10,000s of children are aborted, a practice that is not only supported by the law in some states, but it is something celebrated by many Australians. Over the weekend Jane Caro has come out to defend and… Let’s speak about, not shout ... Read More »

Top cop tells jail bosses: stop riots

WA’s top cop has told prison bosses to “get their act together” and fix problems at the troubled Banksia Hill juvenile detention centre, claiming police wasted hundreds of hours each year responding to call-outs from the facility. The West Australian Grant Taylor Police Commissioner Karl O’Callaghan said the workload was not sustainable and if the situation did not improve, he would consider instructing his officers to “de-prioritise” attending jobs at the prison, except for serious cases. “We are spending an ... Read More »

Children’s rights report 2016

I am pleased to present my fourth annual Children’s Rights Report as the National Children’s Commissioner. Australian Policy Online This report details how I have fulfilled my statutory functions, outlined in Section 46MB of the Australia Human Rights Commission Act 1986 (Cth) (the Act) during the 2015-16 period. During the course of my term, I have continued to… Children’s rights report… Read More »

Seeing Ms Dhu footage: how photographs can argue for human rights

In revealing what Ms Dhu suffered in a Western Australian police cell, her family hope the graphic proof will arouse public opinion The Guardian Jane Lydon and Donna Oxenham Ms Dhu was a 22-year-old Yamatji woman who died in custody in the South Hedland police station in August 2014. Arrested for unpaid fines, she was already suffering from… Seeing Ms Dhu footage: how photographs can… Read More »

SA Premier Jay Weatherill apologises to LGBTIQ community for discrimination

South Australian Premier Jay Weatherill has made an apology in State Parliament to members of the LGBTIQ community who have been discriminated against because of legislation. ABC Leah MacLennan During his apology, Mr Weatherill spoke of the death of a British man, David Bulmer-Rizzi, in South Australia whose marriage was not recognised on his death certificate. Mr Bulmer-Rizzi died while honeymooning in… SA Premier Jay Weatherill apologises to… Read More »

Royal commission asked to make damning findings against school and Hollingworth

A royal commission investigating historical child sex abuse has been asked to make damning findings against Queensland’s most prestigious school and a former governor-general. Brisbane Times Jorge Branco In submissions published on Thursday, counsel assisting said a large number of students likely would not have been abused had former Brisbane Grammar School headmaster Maxwell Howell investigated sexual abuse claims from students. Over two weeks in November 2015, the commission… Royal commission asked to make… Read More »

Trials delayed as ACT Supreme Court runs out of room

ACT Supreme Court cases are being delayed because of a lack of room, as the construction of a new court complex begins. ABC Elizabeth Byrne The court is at its busiest with a series of major trials in the lead up to Christmas and a lack of jury facilities has caused major logistical problems. Chief Justice Helen Murrell’s central… Trials delayed as ACT Supreme… Read More »

Government passes bill to detain terrorists indefinitely

High-risk terror offenders in Australia may now be kept in jail even after serving their sentences, under legislation passed Thursday that strengthens laws to tackle the threat posed by extremists. SBS Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull flagged the move to detain terrorists indefinitely in July, prompted by the frequency and severity of attacks around the world. It will allow Attorney-General George Brandis to… Government passes bill to detain… Read More »

Australian and New Zealand Society of Criminology Conference heads to Hobart

As the world moves forward, criminology experts from across the globe have travelled to Tasmania to discuss the future of international criminal justice. The Examiner Michelle Wisbey National and international criminologists descended to Hobart on Wednesday for the 29th ​Australian and New Zealand Society of Criminology Conference. More than 300 delegates are taking part in the… Australian and New Zealand Society of… Read More »

Gay panic defence: Bill introduced to Queensland Parliament

The Queensland government has introduced a bill to abolish the controversial “gay panic” defence. Brisbane Times Felicity Caldwell The homosexual advance defence, to use its legal term, has been used by people accused of murder to claim they were provoked due to an unwanted sexual advance. The successful application of section 304 of… Gay panic defence: Bill introduced to… Read More »