Economic Policy Scrutiny Committee Inquiry into the Firearms Legislation Amendment Bill 2019 November 2019
Tabled paper 1423
Tabled papers for 13th Assembly 2016 - 2020; Tabled papers; ParliamentNT
Tabled by Tony Sievers
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Department of the Legislative Assembly
Examination of the Bill 23 Recommendation 4 The Committee recommends that proposed section 49K(2) be amended to provide that: If a licence, permit or certificate of registration under the Act is held by a body corporate, other than a firearms dealer, and the officer of the body corporate who holds the body corporates licence is a person to whom a firearm prohibition order relates, the licence, permit or certificate is suspended by the making of the order and the suspension takes effect once the order has been served on the person. In order to lift the suspension the body corporate must, within 14 days of being advised by police of the suspension of the licence, advise the Commissioner of a new representative to be the body corporate licence holder. If the Commissioner is satisfied that the nominated representative is a fit and proper person to be the representative licence holder, the suspension may be lifted and the licence may continue to operate. If a licence, permit or certificate of registration under this Act is held by a firearms dealer to which a firearm prohibition order relates, the licence, permit or certificate is cancelled by the making of the order and the cancellation takes effect on the order being served on the person. Clause 6 proposed section 49U Search of person to whom firearm prohibition or relates without warrant or consent 3.33 Proposed s 49U enables police, without a warrant or consent, to exercise powers under s 49U(2) and (3) if the exercise of the power is reasonably required to determine whether a person with an FPO is contravening the order. Subsection (2) relates to searching the person or things in the persons possession while subsection (3) relates to detaining the person being searched and seizure of any firearm or firearm related item found on or in the persons possession. 3.34 The Law Society commented that the threshold of reasonably required for conducting the search is a lower threshold than the well-established principle of reasonable grounds.27 In addition, they note that similar legislation in NSW and Victoria has resulted in police using the legislation inappropriately to initiate searches for reasons other than a belief that a person subject to an FPO was breaching that FPO. As a remedy for this they recommend including in the Bill a provision for an avenue of appeal to the court regarding the validity of searches, on the basis of whether the search was unreasonable or an abuse of power. 28 27 Submission 3 Law Society NT, p. 1. 28 Submission 3 Law Society NT, p. 3.
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