Global Pariah

The Catholic church is fast becoming a global pariah. In an extraordinarily self-righteous pronouncement, the church announced that is going to ignore the findings of the Royal Commission and will flaunt the laws in SA requiring the reporting of any admissions of child sexual abuse. Presumably they already adopt the same attitude in relation to those ...

You Scratch My Back, I’ll Watch Yours

  It is a well entrenched principle of sentencing in the criminal law that certain features of a case may be regarded as mitigatory in their effect on punishment. Such features might include a plea of guilty, a demonstration of remorse, forgiveness by the victim or assistance given to the investigating authorities. The absence of these features does ...

Mixed Blessings

  For better or worse the involvement of the British Empire in the settling of Australia has left us with many of the trappings of British, and particularly English, life. We have benefited as a nation from a heritage of parliamentary democracy, our legal system and, of course, cricket. However we have had good cause to question the ...

Not As Easy As It Looks – A Judge in Chains

Criticism has been made of the approach taken by a District Court judge in sentencing a man convicted of dangerous driving causing death.   In his article headed - “SA Judge Paul Muscat says it is ‘disheartening’ for courts to pass harsh mandatory sentences on killer drivers who are of good character” Mr Sean Fewster criticized the judge for ...

Parole – Does It Work?

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The operation of our parole system is an issue that incites heated debate. The legal issues involved are complex and touch upon community views on punishment, safety and the dependability of our criminal justice system. Unfortunately, parole has always been more than a simple legal issue. It has been the plaything of politicians at least since ...

Watch Out!

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The ability to drive a car on a public road is a privilege not a right. It is a conditional liberty granted to those who comply with certain conditions. Failure to comply with those conditions - that is obeying the road rules - will generally have some consequences upon the person’s ability to drive. Road ...

Just Tell Us the Truth – We Can Handle It

One thing is disturbingly clear from the contributions made to the nuclear waste dump debate by Jay Weatherill and Steven Marshall. They’ve both missed or deliberately ignored the main game - is having a nuclear waste dump in our backyard or even underneath it, safe? Safe for us, safe for our families, our children, their ...