Sentencing – New Challenges

Date: 3 to 4-Mar-2018
Cost: $580.00
Venue: The Australian National University


Registrations for the biennial Sentencing conference have opened.


Saturday 3 March 2018

9:00am: Official Opening and Welcome to Country

9:15am: Keynote Address

  • The Honourable Justice Virginia Bell AC, High Court of Australia

10:05am: Post-sentence Detention for Serious Sex and Violent Offenders: Controversies and What Works

  • Prof Patrick Keyzer, Head of School and Chair of Law and Public Policy, La Trobe Law School, La Trobe University (profile)
  • Dr Katie Seidler, Clinical and Forensic Psychologist, LSC Psychology
  • Session chair: Justice Desmond Fagan, Supreme Court of New South Wales

In this session, the regimes of post-sentence detention for serious sex offenders (and for serious violent offenders in NSW and SA), which exist in all jurisdictions except Tasmania and the ACT, will be discussed from legal and psychological perspectives. Beyond controversies from over 15 years of operation such regimes including, constitutional and human rights challenges, a focus will be on recent evaluations of what is working and what could be changed in the operation of these regimes.

11:25am: Post-sentence Detention for Terrorism Offenders: Implementing the New Regime

  • Mr Luke Grant, Assistant Commissioner, Corrections Strategy and Policy, Corrective Services NSW
  • Session chair: Dr Mark Nolan, Associate Professor, ANU College of Law, Australian National University

In this session we discuss implementation challenges from legal, correctional, and psychological perspectives of the new federal regime of post-sentence detention for terrorist offenders. The federal regime established via the Criminal Code (Cth), Division 105A, unlike the regimes of post-sentence detention for sex offenders and violent offenders in States and Territories, does not make separate provision for supervision orders; though, the federal scheme of control orders has been suggested as a relevant alternative to the usual choice made between continuing detention orders (CDO) and supervision orders. Expert assessment of terrorism recidivism is also able to be received from a wider range of experts than usual moving beyond the typical primary assessments by psychiatrists. National security information secrecy protections will also add new dimensions to CDO hearings, as will ongoing debates surrounding the evolution of forensic risk assessment tools arguably able to measure risk of terrorism offence recidivism.

1:30pm: Sentencing for Terrorism Offences

  • The Hon Anthony Whealy QC, formerly of Supreme Court of NSW (profile)
  • The Hon Justice Roslyn Atkinson AO, Supreme Court of Queensland
  • Session chair: Assoc Prof Miriam Gani, ANU College of Law, Australian National University

2:45pm: Sentencing Stress & Vicarious Trauma

  • Ms Carly Schrever, Judicial College of Victoria
  • Chief Judge Peter Kidd SC, County Court of Victoria
  • Session chair: Judge Sue Cohen, County Court of Victoria

Carly Schrever brings both her fields of study – law and psychology – to the topic of judicial stress.  Her current work for her  PhD will be the first empirical research on judicial stress undertaken in Australia, this having been as she describes an unmentionable topic until the last few years.  Sentencing is only one aspect of judicial life and work she considers in analysing the causes of judicial stress and recommendations to address them.

Chief Judge Peter Kidd will speak about the Reflective Practice program developed by the County Court of Victoria to support its judges’ resilience.  The program was developed in recognition of the unique pressures of judicial office, including from the sentencing process, and cumulative impact of exposure to emotional exhaustion and vicarious trauma, together with external factors which may be impacting upon judges’ lives and work.

4:05pm: Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder, Juveniles and the Criminal Justice System

  • Magistrate Catherine Crawford, Children’s Court of Western Australia
  • Dr Raewyn Mutch, Paediatrician, Telethon Kids Institute (profile)
  • Ms Robyn Williams, PhD Candidate, Health Sciences, Curtin University
  • Session chair: Magistrate Andree Horrigan, Children’s Court of Western Australia

Dr Raewyn Mutch, paediatrician, will examine the prevalence of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) in light of a study of sentenced juveniles in the West Australian Banksia Detention Centre in 2016, the nature of the impairments identified, their impact upon functioning, and how such a diagnosis is made in Australia.
Ms Robyn Williams, Ph.d Candidate, will discuss the experience of FASD among Noongar families in south west Western Australia.
Magistrate Catherine Crawford, Children’s Court WA, will examine how Children’s Courts need to approach sentencing of FASD affected youth: the practical issues, relevant sentencing principles and leading Australian and Canadian practice.

5:20pm: Social Function: Drinks and Canapes

6:50pm: End of Day One

Sunday 4 March 2018

9:30am: Who really pays for environmental crime? Sentencing in Environmental Prosecutions

  • Justice Rachel Pepper, Land & Environment Court NSW
  • Judge Sue Cole, Environment, Resources and Development Court SA
  • Session chair: The Hon Richard Refshauge, formerly of Supreme Court of the Australian Capital Territory

The legislation creating environmental offences at both a State and federal level has created some interesting and innovative sentencing options, which are important given the serious and widespread consequences that environmental crime can have. This paper will examine how traditional sentencing concepts are being applied in cases of environmental crime alongside the more innovative orders that are available, by asking the age old question, ‘does crime pay?’

11:05am: One Punch Laws and Judicial Responses to Alcohol-Fuelled Public Violence

  • Dr Julia Quilter, Assoc Prof, School of Law, University of Wollongong
  • The Hon Justice Natalie Adams, Supreme Court of NSW
  • Session chair: Dr Anthony Hopkins, Senior Lecturer, ANU College of Law, Australian National University

In this session, we will examine an important recent development in homicide law: the creation of a discrete homicide offence to address deaths caused in the context of a ‘one-punch’ assault. Such laws are now in place in five Australian jurisdictions (WA, NT, NSW, Victoria and Queensland). In addition to assessing these regimes, we will examine recent sentencing decisions in relation to violent, alcohol‐fuelled criminal offending.

12:00pm: A Snapshot of Issues

  • Session chair: His Honour Geoff Muecke, formerly of District Court of South Australia

Speakers will be invited to give brief 5-10 minute “snapshots” of current issues in sentencing law from a practitioner, judicial, academic, or other perspective. This session aims to highlight emerging issues in sentencing law across the different Australian jurisdictions and allow speakers to “whet the appetite” of the audience in order to foster formation of networks of interested practitioners, policy-makers, researchers and judicial officers where relevant.

1:00pm: Conference Close and Lunch

Registration Fees

All prices are inclusive of GST

Early bird registration
(available until 31st December, 2017)
 $140  $500
From 1st January, 2018  $160  $580

*Proof of full-time student status is required.