Victim influence

therapeutic jurisprudence and sentencing law in the New South Wales court of criminal appeal

Tyrone Kirchengast

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Victim impact evidence was introduced by the Victim Rights Act 1996 (NSW) to facilitate greater victim participation in sentencing. Since then, various decisions of the New South Wales Court of Criminal Appeal have read down these provisions, now contained in the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999 (NSW). Most recently, R v. Slack [2004] NSWCCA 128 ('Slack') ruled that impact evidence is unlikely to influence sentence because facts in aggravation of an offender's sentence need to be established beyond reasonable doubt. Following 'Slack', the bulk of submissions contained in a victim impact statement may now be rejected, against the intent of Parliament providing for their tenure in the first instance. This article explores the consequences of 'Slack' and the ways in which this decision will further limit the justiciable and therapeutic outcomes intended by the 1996 reforms.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)143-159
Number of pages17
JournalFlinders journal of law reform
Volume10
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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