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Wednesday, 28 April 1971

Property (Application of State Laws) Act, which allowed State laws to run on Commonwealth property. 1 did hear some suggestion emanating from honourable senators opposite that this was a piece of tyrannical legislation. I desire to point out that the penalty under this legislation for unlawful assembly is a fine of ยง250 - this is the maximum penally - or 3 months imprisonment. The maximum penalty in Queensland for the same offence is 1 years imprisonment. If it happened in Senator Wright's State pf Tasmania the penalty which could be imposed is an unlimited fine and 'up to 21 years imprisonment. If it happened in the State of South Australia the penalty could be an unlimited fine and unlimited imprisonment. How, in the tight of these contrasting penalties, can anyone argue that by introducing legislation which provides a maximum of 3 months imprisonment we are enacting legislation which is more tyrannical than the existing laws.

We have seen in this country in recent times a growth in what has been euphemistically described as "signs'. Only the States of New South Wales and Victoria have appropriate' legislation to deal with this particular activity. I wish to quote the words of a distinguished Labor lawyer on this matter. On this occasion - on this aspect, at any rate- -I am in complete agreement with bini. He said that people who make invasions of Commonwealth offices are contemptible cowards. He added:

The people who participated in those invasions, those threats, those demonstrations, those, sit-ins should have been brought to trial.

Senator Murphy - Who said that?

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