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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1997 Week 12 Hansard (12 November) . . Page.. 4009..


Former Deputy Chief Minister

MR BERRY: My question without notice is to Mrs Carnell in her capacity as Chief Minister. Chief Minister, I refer to the events of December 1996 when, on your recommendation, the then Deputy Chief Minister, Mr De Domenico, signed a letter dismissing Ms Jacqui Rees from the Interim Kingston Foreshore Development Authority. As a result of this action, Mr Moore threatened a vote of no confidence in Mr De Domenico, with a view to forcing the Government to reverse its decision. Chief Minister, can you confirm that on 12 December 1996, less than a week later, Mr De Domenico was invited to Sydney by Mr Knop to discuss the prospect of employment with a private company?

MRS CARNELL: I have no personal knowledge of Mr De Domenico going to Sydney to speak to Mr Knop.

MR BERRY: I have a supplementary question. Were you aware of the efforts to find Mr De Domenico a job? If so, when did you become aware? How did you become aware?

MRS CARNELL: Mr De Domenico did come to see me. He indicated that he had been offered a job in the private sector and indicated that he was looking at it seriously. I cannot remember what date that was, but it was certainly a couple of weeks before he finally resigned.

Intoxication Defence

MRS LITTLEWOOD: My question is to the Attorney-General. Is the Attorney-General aware of comments by the Commonwealth Attorney-General and the Minister responsible for the status of women about the so-called drunk's defence used recently to acquit Noa Nadruku of charges of assault? I understand the Commonwealth referred to three jurisdictions which still have the common law defence of intoxication. What are the implications of the Commonwealth's statement that it has legislated to impose the provisions of the Model Criminal Code? If that is the case, are there three jurisdictions which have this defence?

MR HUMPHRIES: I thank Mrs Littlewood for that question. I think members will be aware that the Commonwealth Minister responsible for the status of women and the Attorney-General have, at various stages, made reference to the three jurisdictions which have retained the common law defence of intoxication. Soon after Mr Nadruku's acquittal, I announced that the ACT would review that defence. I indicated earlier today that I propose to introduce tomorrow legislation to remove the availability of intoxication as a defence for basic intent offences such as assault. In the course of preparing that response and reviewing the law I have looked at the situation in other jurisdictions.

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