- Sentencing Legislation Amendment (Persons Linked to Terrorism) Bill 2021 passes State Parliament
- Persons with links to terrorism to be subject to a presumption against parole
- Legislation ensures terrorism-related risks are appropriately assessed before a person with links to terrorism is granted the privilege of an early release
- Reforms aimed at minimising terrorism-related risk to WA community
The State Government's second tranche of reforms, which provide for a presumption against parole for persons with links to terrorism, has passed through Parliament.
The reforms are aimed at minimising the terrorism-related risk to the Western Australian community and form part of a range of practical and legislative measures agreed by the 2017 Council of Australian Governments (COAG) to strengthen the nationally-consistent approach to countering the threat of terrorism in Australia.
In 2019, the McGowan Government enacted laws for persons who demonstrated support for or have links to terrorist activity to be subject to a presumption against bail.
Likewise, the laws pertaining to parole will ensure that terrorism-related risks are appropriately assessed before a person with links to terrorism is granted the privilege of an early release from prison or detention.
Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan:
"The amendments form part of a range of practical and legislative measures agreed by COAG to strengthen the nationally-consistent approach to countering the evolving threat of terrorism in Australia.
"We all remember the December 2014 siege at the Lindt Café in Sydney by an offender who was on bail facing charges of sexual assault and accessory to murder.
"In 2017, the terrorist attack in Brighton, Victoria, by an offender who was on parole at the time of the attack while serving a sentence for home invasion offences, reminded us that the threat of terrorism in Australia is real.
"Our laws will ensure that Western Australia's legislative framework is equipped to deal with terrorism risk."
Comments attributed to Attorney General John Quigley:
"The impetus for these changes was the increased incidents of terrorist-related violence perpetrated by persons with known links to terrorism who were on bail or parole when committing terrorist acts on Australian soil.
"Parole is a privilege, not a right. Under the new laws, persons with links to terrorism will be subject to a presumption against parole unless they can demonstrate exceptional reasons why they should be released.
"The safety of the community must remain the paramount consideration and under our reforms, persons with links to terrorism will be subject to the highest scrutiny and oversight by the justice system."
Minister's office - 6552 6800