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Wednesday, 28 October 1914

Senator GARDINER (New South Wales) (Vice-President of the Executive Council) . - I see no difficulty about the clause. It appears to me to be quite clear that if a person is an offender for a second time, whether his first offence Be against a State law or a Commonwealth law, it will, under this clause, be within the power of a Judge to impose a sentence up to double the maximum penalty provided for the offence he has committed. It does not follow that the maximum penalty, for which provision is made, will be imposed. If the offence is one which could be met without the imposition of a severe penalty, I have no doubt that a severe penalty will not be imposed. If the clause made a hard-and-fast provision that double the maximum penalty should in every such case be imposed, I could understand the objection raised by the honorable senator. It will not, I think, be denied that a person convicted for the second time of an offence should be liable to a heavier penalty than a person convicted for the same offence for the first time: That is really all that the clause provides for.

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