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Victorian lawyers call for removal of 'rushed' bill

Victorian lawyers call for removal of 'rushed' bill

The peak body representing lawyers in Victoria has called on the state government to withdraw a "rushed" sex offenders bill, saying it falls short of the Charter of Human Rights.

THE peak body representing lawyers in Victoria has called on the state government to withdraw a "rushed" sex offenders bill, saying it falls short of the Charter of Human Rights. 


Law Institute of Victoria president Danny Barlow said the association believes the Serious Sex Offenders (Detention and Supervision) Bill 2009 should be amended to comply with the Chatrer, as well as the common law.


“The Police Minister and the Victorian Attorney have rejected the recommendations of the Sentencing Advisory Council [SAC] in drafting this flawed Bill,” Barlow said. 


Barlow said the government has not consulted with the LIV in drafting the Bill, and was pushing it through the last sitting days of Parliament for the year.


The SAC recommended in 2007 that a post sentence detention scheme should not be introduced in Victoria. The SAC also recommended that a scheme must include legislative safeguards to protect against the arbitrary exercise of power to detain persons after they have completed their sentence. 


“Any legislation which seeks to detain a person for three years without charge and conviction, but for offences which might be committed in the future, must contain the most stringent safeguards to limit the use of this draconian measure which offends the most basic and treasured of our legal principles – the right to liberty of the person,” Barlow said.

 

He urged the Opposition parties to unite to ensure the Bill is held over for next year to allow informed consultation and produce a better Bill.


A copy of the LIV’s submission on the Bill is available at http://www.liv.asn.au/LIVSubmissions




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