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And you know why: compulsory jailing and racism

John, Ah Kit

Description

Much has been made over the last few months over the mandatory sentencing regime in the Northern Territory and Western Australia. However, the words ‘mandatory sentencing’ obscure what has been perpetrated by the governments of those two jurisdictions. ‘Mandatory sentencing’ is meaningless really: all judges and magistrates sentence those who are found guilty even if, in their judgement, circumstances are such that a conviction might not be recorded. It is a judgement and a discretionary...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorJohn, Ah Kit
dc.date.accessioned2003-10-20
dc.date.accessioned2004-05-19T15:36:40Z
dc.date.accessioned2011-01-05T08:36:25Z
dc.date.available2004-05-19T15:36:40Z
dc.date.available2011-01-05T08:36:25Z
dc.date.created2000
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/41425
dc.description.abstractMuch has been made over the last few months over the mandatory sentencing regime in the Northern Territory and Western Australia. However, the words ‘mandatory sentencing’ obscure what has been perpetrated by the governments of those two jurisdictions. ‘Mandatory sentencing’ is meaningless really: all judges and magistrates sentence those who are found guilty even if, in their judgement, circumstances are such that a conviction might not be recorded. It is a judgement and a discretionary decision on sentence nevertheless. What we are really talking about is not ‘mandatory sentencing’ but ‘compulsory jailing’. We are talking about a legal regime under which, across a large range of property crimes, judges and magistrates have absolutely no choice. They have been left with no discretion; they have been left without powers to take into account any single aspect of the circumstances surrounding the crime such as the mental state of the defendant, or the triviality of the offence. For juveniles, which in the Northern Territory is defined as 15—17 year olds, means compulsory jailing on a second offence of 28 days. Subsequent offences also attract a 28 day compulsory jailing. There is an empty legislative attempt at diversionary schemes. For adults, this means compulsory jailing on a first offence of 14 days; on a second offence of 3 months and a year in jail on a third offence. No second chances. No diversionary schemes.
dc.format.extent45351 bytes
dc.format.extent349 bytes
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdf
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/octet-stream
dc.language.isoen_AU
dc.publisherBrinkin, NT : The Australian National University, North Australia Research Unit (NARU)
dc.subjectmandatory sentencing
dc.subjectracism
dc.subjectNorthern Territory
dc.subjectAborigines
dc.subjectcriminal justice system
dc.subjectprison sentences
dc.subjectlegal discrimination
dc.titleAnd you know why: compulsory jailing and racism
dc.typeWorking/Technical Paper
local.description.refereedno
local.identifier.citationyear2000
local.identifier.eprintid2144
local.rights.ispublishedyes
dc.date.issued2000
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationNorth Australia Research Unit, RSPAS
local.contributor.affiliationANU
local.citationDiscussion Paper 19/2000
dcterms.accessRightsOpen Access
CollectionsANU North Australia Research Unit (NARU)

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