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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2019 Week 7 Hansard (1 August) . . Page.. 2593 ..


Leave granted.

MR GENTLEMAN: I move amendments Nos 1 to 3 circulated in my name together and table a supplementary explanatory statement to the government amendments [See schedule 1 at page 2643].

Amendments agreed to.

Bill, as a whole, as amended, agreed to.

Bill, as amended, agreed to.

Crimes Legislation Amendment Bill 2019

Debate resumed from 16 May 2019, on motion by Mr Ramsay:

That this bill be agreed to in principle.

MR HANSON (Murrumbidgee) (11.33): The Crimes Legislation Amendment Bill 2019 is an omnibus bill that introduces a range of changes related to organised crime, drugs legislation, firearms and family violence. In summary the bill: creates a statutory authority and process in the Bail Act 1992 for a police officer to enter a premises to effect an arrest when a person has failed or is going to fail to comply with a condition of their bail; gives effect to the equitable sharing arrangements as agreed under the intergovernmental agreement on the national cooperative scheme on unexplained wealth; clarifies the original policy intent for the definitions of "choke", "strangle" and "suffocate" in the Crimes Act; provides that the sale and consumption of low THC hemp seeds as food will not be subject to criminal offences; allows police officers at or above the rank of sergeant to take oaths or affirmations for affidavits of service in family and personal violence proceedings; and removes from a number of offences under the Firearms Act 1996 the element that a person is not authorised interstate to possess or use the firearm or ammunition in question and instead introduces a defence which would require the defendant to provide proof that they were authorised interstate.

The Canberra Liberals support the intent of the changes in this legislation and we will support the bill. However, the legal profession has raised concerns about how this bill has been drafted and potential unintended consequences. Of the concerns raised since tabling, the Bar Association have made a formal submission against the changes to the Bail Act. The bar give careful consideration to important areas of law, such as the appropriate limits of police power to arrest for an alleged breach of a bail condition having regard to the Human Rights Act. The submission also gives practical examples and case studies which are, as the Bar Association states, a salutary reminder of what can result when arrest occurs.

The bar also notes that the proposed ACT provision is different to the equivalent section of the New South Wales legislation. I understand that the government has received this detailed submission. I am not aware if they have responded but it is


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