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Wednesday, 4 July 1906
Page: 996

Mr DUGALD THOMSON (NORTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES) - That shows that the Minister has not grasped the case.

Sir William Lyne - I mean the case would be exactly the same as that in which a man who is first tried and acquitted by one jury is again brought up and found guilty bv another jury

Mr DUGALD THOMSON (NORTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES) - The two cases are wholly different. The jury appointed under the Bil] will have to give decisions which will bear upon the administration of the law for the whole Commonwealth, and not merely for a State.

Sir William Lyne - The only way in which the difficulty could be overcome would be bv appointing a travelling jury.

Mr DUGALD THOMSON (NORTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I am not in favour of the appointment of a jury at all.

Mr Fisher - How would the honorable member meet the difficulty without altering the criminal law ?

Mr DUGALD THOMSON (NORTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I have heard of a suggestion which may partially meet the case. I shall, however, leave it to the honorable member who made the suggestion to mention it if he thinks fit.

Sir William Lyne - I can assure the honorable member that I am not very much in love with the proposal to remit these cases to a jury for decision, but I do not see how we can overcome the difficulty.

Mr DUGALD THOMSON (NORTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES) - So far as I have been able to think over it, I believe that the plan suggested to me by the honorable member for Bland would overcome the worst phase of the difficulty. The suggestion is not mine, 'and therefore I prefer that the honorable member who is responsible for it should bring it before the Committee.

Mr Watson - There are no proprietary rights in it. I have no objection to the honorable member mentioning it.

Mr DUGALD THOMSON (NORTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES) - I have not thought the matter out, but at the first blush it seems that the suggestion of the honorable member would be of some assistance. If, after further consideration, he entertains the same opinion, I hope that he will bring it forward. I do see very considerable danger in remitting the decision of these questions to a jury. If the determination could, to some extent, be referred to a Justice of the High Court, we should occupy a much safer position, and much less contradictory decisions would be given.

Sir William Lyne - I think so, too.

Mr DUGALD THOMSON (NORTH SYDNEY, NEW SOUTH WALES) - After the Minister has proposed his amendment, I shall move for the excision of paragraph b of this clause. If that be not carried, I shall submit another amendment at a later stage, but I will move the first in such a way' that it will not prevent other amendments being moved in the clause if mine is not carried.

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