Hon Christian Porter BA(Hons) BEc LLB(UWA) MSc(Dist)(LSE) MLA

Hon Christian Porter BA(Hons) BEc LLB(UWA) MSc(Dist)(LSE) MLA

Former Treasurer; Attorney General

    Manslaughter now with life maximum

    24/11/2011 12:00 AM
     
    • State Government’s Manslaughter Amendment Bill passes Parliament
    • Life imprisonment now the maximum penalty for manslaughter
    • All manslaughter cases to be heard in the Supreme Court
    • All dangerous driving causing death cases to be heard in the District Court

    Life imprisonment will be the new maximum available to imprison people convicted of manslaughter after the Liberal-National Government’s Manslaughter Amendment Bill 2011 passed both houses of State Parliament last night.

     

    The amendments will ensure all manslaughter cases will be heard in the Supreme Court to ensure the gravity of the cases is dealt with at the highest level.  The legislation also requires dangerous driving causing death be dealt with on indictment in the District Court.

     

    “These laws are designed to ensure that when a life is lost, the person who has committed a violent assault in someone’s home; or who drinks and drives; or who deliberately and violently attacks a victim in the streets will face the most serious maximum penalty available,” Attorney General Christian Porter said.

     

    “The swift passage of this Bill through Parliament sends a clear message that we share community sentiment that when a life is taken through criminal behaviour the penalty should better reflect the magnitude of that loss.”

     

          Fact File

    • In 2010-11 there were 62 reported homicides in Western Australia
    • In 2007, in Bunbury, a 19-year-old male was shot and killed at the door of his family home.  The offender pleaded guilty to manslaughter and was sentenced to four years and three months imprisonment, eligible for parole after two years
    • In 2007, a father of five was struck and killed by an offender wielding a cricket bat on a Geraldton beach.  The offender pleaded guilty to manslaughter and was sentenced to five years imprisonment.  He was made eligible for parole after three years and nine months
    • In 2009, a 37-year-old mother died following a collision with a car driven the wrong way along Kwinana Freeway by a drug affected driver.  The case was dealt with in the Magistrates Court, and the offender received three years jail, made eligible for parole after 18 months
    • In 2010, a Buddhist monk was beaten to death in an unprovoked and extremely violent attack. The offender was sentenced to five years and four months imprisonment, made eligible for parole after three years
    • The change will bring WA back into line with the United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, Queensland and South Australia where the maximum penalty for manslaughter is life imprisonment

    Attorney General’s office - 9222 8800