- Attorney General refers Scott Austic petition to the Court of Appeal
Attorney General John Quigley has decided to refer the 2009 conviction of Scott Austic for the wilful murder of Stacey Thorne to the Court of Appeal.
The decision follows a petition made on behalf of Mr Austic dated February 19, 2018.
Comments attributed to Attorney General John Quigley:
"I decided to refer the petition to the Court of Appeal upon the advice of the Solicitor General.
"I have also received a copy of the outcome of a previous investigation by the Corruption and Crime Commission into allegations of misconduct concerning the case.
"The Corruption and Crime Commission formed no opinions of misconduct by either the police or the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions. The CCC noted, however, that there were potential concerns in relation to aspects of the evidence against Mr Austic, including in relation to a cigarette packet and the knife identified as the murder weapon.
"I have accepted the Solicitor General's advice that public confidence in the administration of justice requires that those concerns be fully addressed in an independent, open and transparent way. The best way for that to occur is for those concerns to be addressed by the court.
"It will be a matter for the court to determine whether, by reason of the matters Mr Austic raises, there has been any miscarriage of justice in his case.
"Having decided to refer the matter it is not appropriate for me, as Attorney General, to express any view in relation to the merits of the case.
"I understand that the referral of this case back to the court may cause distress to Ms Thorne's family and I extend my condolences to them for their loss.
"I hope that the examination by the court of matters that have been the subject of public comment for some years will finally bring speculation about this case to an end.
"I plan to introduce legislation into the Parliament later this year, similar to that in South Australia and Tasmania, to allow cases such as this one to be presented directly to the Court of Appeal instead of being considered by the Attorney General."
Attorney General's office - 6552 6800