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Department of Justice

Crimes (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 2016

The Crimes (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 2016 (pdf, 334.4 KB) has been released for consultation.

The Bill makes a number of minor amendments to the Criminal Code Act 1924, Criminal Justice (Mental Impairment) Act 1996 and Sentencing Act 1997.

The Bill amends the Criminal Code Act 1924 by:

  • clarifying the requirement for the conduct to be “unlawful” in relation to the crime of intentionally causing grievous bodily harm;
  • removing the requirement that preliminary proceedings in relation to the charge of rape be conducted by a magistrate;
  • clarifying the circumstances in which a person may be charged with the crime of being found prepared for the commission of a crime;
  • clarifying the use of insider information in relation to the fraud provisions;
  • providing for the Crown to give a closing address in circumstances where an accused is unrepresented and has called no witnesses;
  • removing the requirement for an accused to be asked by a court official whether he has anything to say as to why sentence should not be passed upon him or her; and
  • adding the crimes of carjacking and aggravated carjacking to the list of crimes where an arrest can be made without a warrant if a police officer has reasonable grounds for believing that a person has committed the crime.

The Bill amends the Criminal Justice (Mental Impairment) Act 1999 by:

  • inserting a definition of “controlling authority” to incorporate the definition of the term in the Mental Health Act 2013;
  • allowing the Court to make an interim order;
  • allowing the Court to make a temporary supervision order for a specified period;
  • clarifying the findings available after special hearing relating to the circumstances where a person is unfit to stand trial;
  • enabling the Court to have reference to one report from either the Chief Forensic Psychiatrist or a medical practitioner nominated by the Chief Forensic Psychiatrist and one report from another expert who need not be a medical practitioner;
  • clarifying that the Magistrates Court is to refer a matter to the Supreme Court for determination where it considers that a forensic order should be made;
  • providing that a defendant may be taken to an approved hospital and need not be transferred to a secure mental health unit unless such transfer is deemed necessary for adequate treatment or protection of the defendant or another person;
  • providing that the transport and escort provisions of the Mental Health Act 2013 apply to persons apprehended under a supervision order;
  • confirming that treatment orders made under the Criminal Justice (Mental Impairment) Act 1999 are deemed to be orders under the Mental Health Act 2013; and
  • inserting enforcement provisions in relation to conditional release orders.

The Bill also amends section 81A of the Sentencing Act 1997 to widen the occasions on which a victim impact statement is to be read to a court.

Any comments on the Bill should be provided in writing to the Office of Strategic Legislation and Policy in the Department of Justice by 20 February 2016 and can be submitted by email to legislationdevelopment@justice.tas.gov.au or by post to GPO Box 825, Hobart, Tas 7001.