Viewing entries posted in April 2013
At the International Justice Conference in Perth, in March 2012, which I attended, delegates heard from the Hon. Ann Bressington MLC from South Australia about a proposal to establish a Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC) along the lines of the one established in the UK in the late 1990's. She advised that her private member's Bill, which was introduced to the SA Parliament on 10 November 2010, had been referred to the Legislative Review Committee. She encouraged those at the conference to consider making a submission to the Committee.
The Sandy Duncanson Social Justice Lecture - Human Rights in Australia: The Role of Public Education and Advocacy
Tonight I am attending the annual Sandy Duncanson Social Justice Lecture at UTAS in Hobart. The guest speaker is Professor Gillian Triggs, the President of the Australian Human Rights Commission. The lecture is an annual event presented by the Faculty of Law, the Inglis Clark Centre for Civil Society and the University of Tasmania Foundation. The lecture supports the Sandy Duncanson Social Justice Fund, which advances the legacy of Tasmanian lawyer Sandy Duncanson. The fund was established in 2011 to ensure that Sandy's commitment and passion for social justice was passed on to future generations of UTAS students. I didn't have the honour of knowing Sandy but he was clearly well-liked and respected by many.
I have been doing quite a lot of work recently in the coronial jurisdiction. For those of you who are interested, it is useful to understand the distinction between "manner" and "cause" of death. The primary distinction to be made between the two concepts is that cause of death is a physiological concept, whereas manner of death relates to the circumstances in which a death took place. For example, Waller's Coronial Law and Practice in New South Wales (Abernethy, Baker, Dillon & Roberts 4th Ed 2010 p.215) states:
Tonight, Monday 29 April 2013, ABC on Australian Story is portraying the "untold personal story" of whistle-blowing detective, Chief Inspector Peter Fox, who is the man credited with sparking the Royal Commission into institutional sexual abuse of children. A must watch!
I have recently discovered an excellent and informative website dealing with many of the legal issues I am interested in. I am referring to the website of the Judicial Commission of NSW at http://www.judcom.nsw.gov.au. Their publications and bench books are most helpful. In fact, I have included their website on my Links page.
The von Deutschburg case, which I posted about earlier today, heightened my interest in the issues arising from the petition for mercy. The petition referred by the WA Attorney-General to the WA Supreme Court was "for the whole of the case to be heard and determined as if it were an appeal by the offender against the conviction".
I previously posted on my blog, on 30 May 2012, information about the WA case involving Chris von Deutschburg and the 1983 "ulcer murder" of Mr Kakulas. On 1 March 2013, the WA Supreme Court set aside the 30-year-old second degree murder conviction of Chris von Deutschburg, with the Judge saying a "miscarriage of justice occurred at the  trial". The acquittal was heavily dependent on evidence from WA microbiology Professor Marshall, which was submitted in the appeal run by Malcolm McCusker QC, before he became WA Governor. See http://www.perthnow.com.au/news/chris-von-deutschburg-cleared-of-1983-ulcer-murder/story-e6frg12l-1226588392509
A fascinating story that I discovered on Bob Moles' "What's New" section on his Networked Knowledge website.It involves the possible wrongful imprisonment of Alice Wheeldon who was convicted of being involved in a bizarre plot to murder the British PM in 1916, with a poison dart, whilst he was playing golf. This is a tale of secret agents, intercepted mail, men on the run and vials of strychnine and curare. Alice's two grandchildren are now lobbying from Sydney for belated justice, nearly 100 years after the event. See http://netk.net.au/UK/UK171.asp
Was doing some research on death by carbon monoxide, either through murder or suicide, and came across a fascinating website. See http://jamesjmurray.wordpress.com/2013/03/06/bloodless-death-scenes/. This particular part of the site outlines how the author, James Murray, considered the various approaches to a "bloodless" death scene. He wanted to write a section in the book where the killer would not leave ANY blood at the crime scene. Options included: "The Temple Blow", "The Russian Omelet" and "The Adam's Apple Crush"!. Murray has experience in pharmaceutical manufacturing and clinical patient management, medications and their impact. Murray draws on his clinical expertise as a pharmacist and his infatuation with the lethal effects of drugs to weave tales of "murder, mayhem and medicine". Also being a pharmacist, I found the whole issue very interesting indeed.
The excerpt below is taken from Ted Duhs' website at www.miscarriagesofjustice.com.au under "Motivation". It is great to see other people working in this critical area.