Note: Where available, the PDF/Word icon below is provided to view the complete and fully formatted document
 Download Full Day's HansardDownload Full Day's Hansard    View Or Save XMLView/Save XML

Previous Fragment    Next Fragment
Thursday, 17 November 1960

Mr BANDIDT (Wide Bay) .- One of the points we must remember in considering this clause is that it refers to a person convicted of indictable offences against the law of the Commonwealth on at least two occasions previously. Indictable offences are most serious offences in this country. Now we are told by the honorable member for Wilmot (Mr. Duthie) that a person who has committed two or more of these most serious offences, such as treason, sedition or sabotage, will think that society is against him if he is handed the " key ". I suggest to the honorable member that he should realize that courts exercise their jurisdiction in this matter very carefully indeed, and that criminals, knowing that courts exercise their jurisdiction very carefully, are themselves particularly careful to avoid being given the key. Now the honorable member suggests that a criminal who indulges in very serious crimes against the Commonwealth on several occasions should be able to continue to do so with impunity if he has not attained the age of 25 years.

I suggest that we should heed what the Attorney-General (Sir Garfield Barwick) has said, and leave the law exactly as he has drawn it up. Then the matter will be one for consideration in each State according to the law that obtains there. The law in Queensland, for example, does not contain any reference to the age of 25 years, and I am sure that the courts in that State as, indeed, the courts in Tasmania, are noted for their impartiality and for the justice that they mete out.

Suggest corrections