Debates Day 3 - Thursday 21 October 1993
Parliamentary Record 21
Debates for 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 6th Assembly 1990 - 1994
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory
DF.RATES Thursday 21 October 1993 Mr- BELL: Mr* Deputy Speaker, the reason that 1 am not pursuing that at this s t a g e a n d in that form is because of the haste of the deliberations. In h i s j u d g m e n t on Hulley v Hill, Justice Mildren said that the Criminal C o d e e x p r e s s l y repealed the Criminal Law Consolidation Act and Ordinances. H o w e v e r , a t p a g e 12 of his judgment, he said that it repealed also the s t a t u t o r y p o w e r s of arrest that had existed up to that time. In the very b r i e f t i m e t h a t has been available to me - namely, since Monday - I have b ee n u n a b l e , a n d indeed the Parliamentary Counsel has been unable, to d i s c o v e r t h e st a t u t o r y powers of arrest that Justice Mildren referred to in that p a r t i c u l a r case. I have no doubt that, given the legal research that the A t t o r n e y - G e n e r a l has undertaken, he will be able to inform us in that r e g a r d b e c a u s e , by golly, he will receive a grilling during the committee stage o n t h a t point. Basically, I believe that he has been half-smart with this b i l l , a n d we will see how well he answers a few questions during the c o m m i t t e e s t a g e in that regard. Mr Manziei You did not clear this with your boss. He just went crook about ' r e a s o n a b l e grounds', so you had better show him this. Mr BELL: T h e point that I wish to make in conclusion concerns the m i n i s t e r ' s c l a i m s in his letter to the Leader of the Opposition where he re f e r r e d t o H u l l e y v Hill. This bill is a response to that decision. I would l i k e t o p o i n t out that the implication that has been made in this case is t h a t s h o p l i f t e r s have gone free because there has been no citizen's power of a r r e s t . T h e fact is that that was not the issue at all. The juveniles, who w e r e t h e s hoplifters in this case, were brought to book. The question i n v o l v e d i n H u l l e y v Hill was one of admissibility of evidence. Mr Manzie: T h a t is not the issue. Mr BELL: T h e Attorney-General has been saying that there is no power of ci t izen's a r r e s t . Mr Manzie: R e a d what Mildren said! Mr BELL: As I pointed out to him in my letter, shop detectives and security g u a r d s ar e getting on with their jobs. There is no reason to believe t h a t t h e parliament would be unable to deal with this in the normal course o f b u s i n e s s , effect the necessary amendments and pass a good, cons i d e r e d p i e c e o f legislation if we left it until November. However, the At t o r n e y G e n e r a l w ants a cheap shot and a law-and-order burst, and he intends t o p o r t r a y our attempt to find a better piece of legislation and make s o m e c o n s t r u c t i v e improvements as some kind of broad-brush opposition to a c o n s t r u c t i v e law-and-order approach. It will not wash with this House, and I d o n o t b e l i e v e it will wash with the community. For him to make the system o f l a w a n d order in the Territory and the administration of justice s ubservient t o h i s short-term political aims does him no credit whatsoever. Mr DEPUTY SPEAKER: Order! The honourable member's time has expired! Mr PARISH (Millner) : Mr Speaker, I do not intend to take anything like my en t i r e t i m e o n this because my colleagues have dealt quite fully with the legal i m p l i c a t i o n s o f this bill. I will return to them briefly. However, the c o n c e r n t h a t I have is more a practical one with the way that the government w i l l s e e k to promote, portray or publicise the legislation once it has g o n e t h r o u g h . I am concerned that, unless there is a responsible publication o f t h e right that will exist again so to speak, there is a risk that p e o p l e w i l l take the law into their own hands and be hurt in the process. I h o p e that the Attorney-General will take cognisance of that and 10 218
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