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JB v R

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Published under Major Cases

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May 23, 2016

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When prosecutors don’t follow the rules, people suffer. This much we have seen through the trial, imprisonment and now release of “JB”. We don’t know his name because when all of this happened he was a juvenile. JB was 15 years old when he was said to have stabbed another man in a street fight. After being arrested, the prosecution alleged that he confessed to a Support Person at the police station. After spending almost 7 years in gaol he was released, and the Court of Criminal Appeal has recently allowed […]


The trial of Simon Gittany for the murder of his partner Lisa Harnum

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February 17, 2014

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The trial of Simon Gittany for the murder of his partner Lisa Harnum captured the attention of the media in Sydney in a way few other matters have recently. This was due, in no small part, to the dramatic nature of Miss Harnum’s death. She died after being thrown from the balcony of their 15 storey apartment in the Sydney CBD. The Crown case rested upon a number of pieces of evidence. The most compelling of those was the fact that Mr Gittany had clearly had a fight with Miss Harnum […]


The decision from the NSWCA in the matter of Kelly Lane

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January 8, 2014

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The decision from the NSWCA in the matter of Kelly Lane is a prime example of how a circumstantial case can come together to prove an offence beyond a reasonable doubt. Ms Lane was charged with having murdered her child Tegan shortly after she gave birth to her. The police had no direct evidence of how or precisely when the child had died, or in fact whether she was dead at all. The court was presented with circumstantial evidence that, on the Crown case, proved beyond a reasonable doubt not only […]


One Punch Laws

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Published under Law Reform, Major Cases, News

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November 14, 2013

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This week saw the announcement by the Attorney General of NSW of a “one punch” law. The law is designed to make it easier for the prosecution to secure a conviction in matters like the Thomas Kelly killing and manifest an intention to impose a severe penalty for those found guilty. But is the law required? Let us remember Loveridge pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of Mr. Kelly and manslaughter carries a maximum penalty of 25 years jail whereas this new law has a maximum of 20 years The reality is […]


Simmering Controversy – Offenders Who Commit Domestic Violence in Their Own Home

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October 24, 2013

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There has long been a simmering controversy in the Court of Criminal Appeal about the way in which offenders who commit domestic violence in their own home should be treated. Section 21A of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act lists a number of factors that can make an offence more or less serious. These are general factors that are designed to be as broad as possible and assist a Court in working out how serious an offence is. One of the factors that is listed as an aggravating feature is that the […]

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