Sentencing Amendment Act commences

The Sentencing Amendment Act 2013 (NT) was assented to on 12 July 2013, and (by force of s6(1) of the Interpretation Act 1978 (NT)) came into force on that date.  According to the Bill’s Explanatory Statement, it “is intended to clarify that the phrase ‘previously convicted of a violent offence’ is not limited by section 78EA of the Sentencing Act and includes any prior conviction for an offence listed in Schedule 2 of the Sentencing Act committed at any time in the past, whether before or after the commencement of current Division 6A.” 

The Second Reading Speech makes for interesting reading.

Following the unfortunate saga of mandatory sentencing laws in the 1990s, CLANT predicted that their recently enacted counterparts would give rise to problems of construction and application.  Unfortunately, the Sentencing Amendment Act 2013 (NT) bears out this prediction.