Tuesday, November 20, 2012

This Is Justice?

UPDATE: It seems the wallopers have grabbed this nasty piece of work, and because legal sorts regard members of the public as profoundly stupid there are already calls and pleas not to comment on the case. This is supposed to safeguard the defendant, but what it really protects is the bench from being held accountable for not keeping an animal off the street. Can't talk about the defendant? Well, how convenient! Can't talk about the judges and parole system that set him free as well.

This is where the law is poised to make an even bigger ass of itself. The post below, which features an excerpt lifted from the Supreme Court's own website, could do nothing but alert potential jurors to the sort of filth that decency should oblige them to flush. A quick google and it is there for anyone to see.

So is the Supreme Court going to take down its report of the successful appeal? Will it re-publish in Sanskrit or Latin?

As demonstrated by any number of trials in the US, where laws regarding pre-trial coverage are considerably less stringent, jurors are quite capable of making up their on minds on the strength of evidence presented. Just ask OJ Simpson about that.

Here, though, things are different. A judiciary that can't, and won't, sequester scum demands that we trust it. Because, you know, they are so much smarter than the rest of us. Well, much better paid, anyway.

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FOR THE SECOND time in just a few months, Victoria Police are hunting for a convicted and released criminal wanted in connection with a young woman's murder. It is being widely reported that Stephen James Hunter, the man with whom police wish to speak, was sentenced in 1986 to 13 years for stabbing a girl to death.

Well there is more than that to Hunter's past -- and yet more reasons to wonder why any citizen should have the slightest faith in our legal system. From Victoria's court of Appeal, 2006:
32 Because of the error to which we have referred, the sentencing discretion is reopened. It is necessary, therefore, to describe in brief terms the circumstances of each of the offences for which Hunter falls to be re-sentenced.
Count 1 – theft of a motor car
33 In early 2002, Hunter rented a sports car from a car rental firm. Following the expiration of the rental period, Hunter kept the vehicle and ultimately gave it to a friend, who sold the vehicle and paid him $2,500 from the sale proceeds. Hunter told investigating police that he committed the theft because he was desperate for money at the time. The vehicle has not been recovered.
Counts 2, 3 and 4 – kidnapping, false imprisonment and causing injury intentionally
34 In March 2002, Samantha Smith, who was a friend of Hunter’s, requested that he find and capture an acquaintance, one Scott McCasker. Smith promised Hunter $500 if he would do so. Hunter enlisted the assistance of his trans-sexual partner, Kelly Piers. On the morning of 12 March 2002, Hunter and Piers located McCasker in St Kilda and forced him into their vehicle. They then drove McCasker to Hunter’s premises in Armadale, where he was taken inside. Later, they drove McCasker to Smith’s address in Diggers Rest but she was not at home. Hunter then took McCasker back to Armadale, where McCasker was tied up and gagged. He was secured with tape and electric cord. His head was tied to a beam with a wire coat-hanger. Whilst McCasker was in that position, Hunter punched him to the face and ribs on a number of occasions, and he suffered injuries to the face and head. McCasker was left tied up in this way until he was able to free himself and escape from Hunter’s premises.
Count 5 – trafficking in a drug of dependence
35 On 22 May 2002 Hunter was arrested in relation to the offences committed in March 2002 to which we have referred. When he was searched, police located a number of half gram bags of amphetamine on Hunter’s person. He told police that he had used and sold amphetamines to pay for his board and rent. Other similar bags were located at Hunter’s premises. He explained to the police how he cut the amphetamine with glucose and bagged it in preparation for sale. He informed the police that he wanted to make money and leave Victoria to avoid warrants which he believed had been issued for his apprehension. He also stated that he had purchased a quarter of an ounce per week prior to his arrest and bagged about 20 "small lots". He admitted having sold ten small bags for $100 each before being arrested.
Read the whole thing, especially the stipulated non-parole period.

 


19 comments:

  1. PhillipGeorge(c)2012November 20, 2012 at 11:17 AM

    Human Rights Lawyer is a fashion statement Prof. The corollary doesn't exist. There is no such thing as a Human Responsibilities Lawyer.

    The bleeding hearts of neo-pagan sentimentality are at pains to exonerate themselves from all culpability. From the second highest office holders lips we get "young and naive". The land is divided now and both fence-less and defenseless. Cognitive dissonance is ubiquitous.

    Anything to the right of Fidel is cast as Shock Jock, Red Neck, Right Wing Extremism.

    The paleo-conservatives lament. GK Chesterton, "When people stop believing in God, they don't believe in nothing -- they believe in anything."

    Your generation are now being buried without fanfare, gun salutes, statues, and tears. All they had to be was Nation maintainers rather than nation builders. The generation before them shed blood, sweat tears and integrity all their physical being.

    Does it leave anything out Prof. Have I missed a bit?

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  2. So the Sydney Collar Bomb Hoaxer gets done for minimum 10 years however this animal only recieved minimum 13 years for killing and then another 4 1/2 years for kidnapping, holding and beating to a pulp someone else whilst on parole? I wonder what multiple you can add to the Sydney Hoaxer's sentence due to it being splashed on the front pages?

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  3. "2. The learned sentencing judge erred in treating the parole sentence as a potential liability contingent on what the parole board may or might not do, rather than an actual liability that was extant."

    Legal gibberish. Fair dinkum the legal profession exist in an alternate universe.

    BTW Prof, my reading of the non parole period is 4 years MINUS 140 days already served.

    I've said before that moronic sentences will continue until judges and parole boards are held responsible for any offences committed by criminals who are released before the maximum sentence for their offence is completed.

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    1. Jupes. Legal gibberish aside it is the Policy behind the sentencing act that needs to be revised. Also, what about offences committed by criminals after the maximum sentence has been served? And, it makes no sense at all for one person to be forced to assume responsibility for another's actions especially when that action is murder. Better to ensure there is no murder to begin with me thinks

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    2. Johnno, this issue has much more to do with how the legal profession deals with the law, than the law itself. After all, the maximum penalty for murder is life in prison. Not 13 years. The judge and parole board decided that 13 years in this case was quite enough. It wasn't. Nor was under 4 years for the other offences.

      I am not suggesting that those allowing violent criminals to be released too early be held solely responsible for crimes the crim then commits. The criminal should be held responsible for that. However the people who made the allegedly informed, and wrong, decision to release him should have to pay a penalty of some sort.

      After all, any other professional who makes a mistake resulting in injury or death does. Why not the legal profession.

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  4. Just waiting for the march where they condemn violence against women in general, rather than criticize the pissweak sentencing that goes on in our legal system. 13 years for stabbing a girl to death. Unbelievable.

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  5. Strangely ,there was never a case of any Murderer who was Hanged ever being charged with ANY Offence. Not even a parking offence ! Hanging Cured Criminals Totally!

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  6. Thank God you are back. I was suffering withdrawal symptoms something chronic

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  7. I read stories like this from time to time and it sickens me to think that so called 'qualified professionals' are the ones most responsible for allowing this type of situation to happen.
    For the record. I spent 7 years as a custodial corrections officer (screw). I resigned partly because of the unrealistic views and decisions made by the so called 'qualifed prisoner management' professionals when assessing prisoner/crim (sorry inmate) behaviour.
    The most common failure was when a visiting behavioural science graduate type would interview a prisoner. I had first hand knowledge as the security officer on several of these interviews. The experienced prisoners knew exactly what answers to give for certain types of questions and how to manipulate the person, and unfortunately the inexperienced interviewer believed most of it.
    As a custodial corrections officer, I and my fellow officers, had more day to day contact with the prisoners than some wet behind the ears university graduate who only got to interview the prisoners for about 20 - 30 minutes at a time and quite infrequently and in some cases only once. As such we, the custodial officers had a better insight as to the prisoners' real characters and behaviour.
    It became obvious to me that, in some of the cases, the prisoners were smarter than the interviewer during these management interviews.
    Prisoner also had another favourite course of action open to them. They would attend 'special classes' to apparently correct their behaviour. Rubbish!! They couldn't care less about their behaviour. Their attendance had a two fold effect. It helped break the boredom and it looked good on their files. No other reasons.
    I still believe today that the parole board/prisoner management people believed in their own rhetoric that prisoners are human and have rights as well. Tell that to their victims or their families.
    One of the straws upon my back prior to my resignation, came after an interview had been completed and I asked the rather young female professional why she had not mentioned the prisoner's two reported misbehavioural reports which the custodial staff had submitted; one of which I had helped compile. Her answer, inter-alia was that because the custodial staff are not university trained and are biased, the professionals tend to ignore our reports.
    That prisoner, a convicted rapist (name withheld) was subsequently recommended for parole and approximately 6 months after his release he was charged with and convicted of murder in Western Australia.
    Another common course of action for some 'inmates' is NOT to apply for parole. Once on parole you have too many restrictions placed on you and besides, on the 'inside' you have all the trappings of the good life; free medical, dental, free food, clothing, shelter, educational opportunities and all the exercise you can get. To hell with any responsibilities and the struggling family on the outside.
    I think the common term for todays engineered society is 'nanny state'.
    PA of SEQ

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  8. Given Gillard's track record with men, she would probably find a man of Hunter's reputation..irresistable. Only problem is... he is not married. It's always more fun for game playing sociepaths when their target is married.

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  9. You don't get it Bunyip. Unless the victim is someone important(Judge, Lawyer, Politician, Beloved Leftist mouthpiece i.e comedian, various vacuous celebrities .etc.)no one cares.

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  10. ~Reply to last comment~

    You forget indigenous persons, refugees, people of exotic backgrounds, gays, blacks(especially blacks), aliens, transgender, transsexual, Mongs(always), deformed, dwarfs, giants, animals(any kind) and best of all criminals(all types). They just can't wait to glorify crims with their own Underbelly series to cater for the filth and scum of society.

    The ABC/SBS can't wait to cry for their rights and the commercial channels aren't exactly perfect either.

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  11. The real issue is one of policy.

    Section 5 (1) of the Sentencing Act (in Victoria, Australia) details the purposes for which sentences may be imposed. They include: punishment; deterrence; denunciation of the offence by the Court; community protection; and rehabilitation.

    It is the rehabilitation element that is the primary culprit. There is, as I understand it, a presumption in law, that all criminals can be rehabilitated. This presumption is erroneous when the criminal is a paedophile; or a psychopath.

    Psychopaths are dangerous people. They are amongst other things: outgoing, confident, likeable, socially engaging, and appearance-proud. Current statistics indicate that 1 in every 100 persons is a psychopath (note: not all psychopaths are murderers).

    Neurological and brain research conducted in recent years has demonstrated that brain of the psychopath is different from the ‘normal’ population. Psychopaths do not experience empathy, guilt, repulsion, or fear – all of which are necessary for rehabilitation.

    If the element of rehabilitation was removed from the Sentencing manual then judges could impose genuine life-long sentences on those who deserve it; on those who need it; on those who do not have the capacity for rehabilitation – ie the paedophile and the psychopath.

    And for those of you who think psychopathology is a load of rubbish – then I suggest you take some time to reflect on those individuals you have encountered (at some stage of your life):
    • whom you liked very much;
    • whose company you enjoyed very much;
    • whose stories did not always make sense but you put those nagging doubts to the very back of your mind because the individual did not falter or seem awkward or embarrassed by the factual discrepancies
    • who has spoken to you at length about his or her life and children etc but did not enquire about yours
    • who made new friends easily but could not retain any of the old ones (of which you were one)
    • who, when you think about his/her you experience a strange sense of unease but are unable to pinpoint how or why this should be so.

    If you are honest with yourself the chances are that you have, at some time in your life, been sucked in by a psychopath.

    It is my view that some of the recent murders that have dominated the news have been committed by psychopaths. If Sentencing policy had recognised psychopathology as a permanent, irreversible condition and sentenced accordingly (and permanently) then the (alleged) murderers would not have been released to roam the streets (on the basis that they have been rehabilitated) and (allegedly) kill again.

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  12. Make long custodial sentences mandatory and take the power out of the hands of judges and defence lawyers
    Anger is a learnt response,,When is the last time a drunk bloke took on a 200lb bikie?

    Any sort of assault against a person whatever the circumstances are should be punished with at least 10 years non-parole. Murder non-parole periods should be 20 years.

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  13. I see the Soggies have grabbed him.
    Quite disappointing really .... I was hoping he would resist, but that was probably a vain hope.
    He does his best work when matched against young girls who could easily make the weight to ride in the Cox Plate

    The Irish Lion

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  14. Regarding your disclaimer. Our legal system is based on the notion that people are innocent until proven guilty. Past crimes are not proof of guilt. Rather guilt is determined by the facts surrounding the specific case being heard, while criminal records are dismissed until sentencing. Publishing a defendants criminal record is can be grounds for a mistrial. If and when the defendant is found guilty you are free to discuss their criminal history as much as you like. The only time when you can't publicly discuss it is the time between charge and conviction. The reason is that it makes conviction harder. If you think this person is guilty and should go to jail, the best thing is to say nothing.

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  15. I can see two sides to this. Of course, as a previous post said, past crimes are no proof of guilt.

    On the other hand, if a jury were weighing up the case of, say, a shoplifter, wouldn't it be relevant that he had prior form, indicating a pattern.

    Until now, it's been rare that what has been published has disrupted a trial, but with the Internet gaining full pace the internal controls exercised by media outlets won't be there.

    I honestly can't see how this can be controlled any longer, and perhaps this law should be revisited.

    But I agree it's time for the courts and parole boards to serious about serious crime.

    At some stage serious criminals step over the line that separates them from the rest of society. That separation should be guaranteed and permanent.

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  16. Quit whinging already.

    If Judges are too lenient in their sentencing for whatever reason, for example a pleasent lunch prior to sentencing, or because the accused was wearing the right school tie, or because he stood in the dock in such a way as to alert the Judge that he was a fellow member of the Grand Gumnut Lodge or whatever, simply replace the Judge's sentencing discretion with mandatory sentencing laws.

    It is up to our elected Parliamentary representatives to dictate mandatory sentences which the Judge must follow.

    It is up to us, the people who appoint our Parliamentary represntatives, to make sure they pass legislation creating mandatory sentences.

    And so if you couldn't be bothered telling your elected representative what you want him or her to do, then quit whinging already.

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