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Friday, 7 May 1915

Senator DE LARGIE (Western Australia) . - It seems extraordinary that the High Court should not have the powers proposed to be given to' it. It is a mere waste of time to pass legislation giving them that power, and then to limit it. The High Court jurisdiction should not be limited in this regard to conspiracy cases. Senator Gould put his finger on the weakness of the Bill when he pointed out by interjection that it will cover only offences arising out of the war. Now that we are legislating in the matter, why not give the High Court full powers to deal with all criminal casesagainst the Commonwealth, whether connected with the war or nott

Senator O'Keefe - To introduce thebroader question might cause a great deal of discussion.

Senator DE LARGIE - There may besomething in that, but it seems a strangeomission in the original Act that it did; not empower the High Court to dea] with all important cases of this kind, no matter when they crop up. It is only right that the High Court, which is supposed to be the highest Court in Australia, should have power to deal with all crimes of this kind arising in peaceor war. I hope the Government will1 consider the desirableness of extending its jurisdiction on those lines.

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