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Wednesday, 28 October 1914

Senator O'KEEFE (Tasmania) . - I move as an amendment -

That clause 47 be reconsidered.

This is one of a number of clauses which were hurriedly put, and its provisions must have escaped notice. Under it any outside person who aids a prisoner to escape is liable to five years' imprisonment, whereas, under clause 49, the penalty provided in the case of a prison official who wilfully permits a prisoner to escape is only two years' imprisonment. I desire that the clause shall be reconsidered so that the penalty may be reduced to two years. I think that the five years' penalty must be a mistake.

Senator Pearce - I agree to the reconsideration of the clause.

Senator Lt.-ColonelO'LOGHLIN (South Australia) [10.54]. - In support of what Senator O'Keefe has said, I would point out that under clause 48 a prisoner who escapes from lawful custody is only liable to imprisonment for two years, whereas a person who aids a prisoner to escape may be imprisoned, under clause 47, for five years. The penalties under many of these clauses seem to have been arrived at in a most haphazard way, and they should be put right.

Motion for reconsideration agreed to.

Clause 47 -

Any person who-

(a)   aids a person in escaping, or at tempting to escape from lawful custody .... shall be guilty of an indictable offence.

Penalty : Imprisonment for five years.

Amendment . (by Senator O'Keefe) agreed to -

That the word "five" be left out, with a view to insert in lieu thereof the word "two."

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