Bills Digest No. 106  1999-2000


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Criminal Code Amendment (Application) Bill 1999

WARNING:
This Digest was prepared for debate. It reflects the legislation as introduced and does not canvass subsequent amendments. This Digest does not have any official legal status. Other sources should be consulted to determine the subsequent official status of the Bill.

CONTENTS

Passage History
Purpose
Background
Main Provisions
Endnotes
Contact Officer and Copyright Details

Passage History

Criminal Code Amendment (Application) Bill 1999

Date Introduced: 24 November 1999

House: House of Representatives

Portfolio: Attorney-General

Commencement: Royal Assent

Purpose

To defer commencement of Chapter 2 of the Commonwealth Criminal Code.

Background

The Model Criminal Code was developed out of a process commenced in the late 1980s to reform Commonwealth criminal law. The framework for the code was enacted for the Commonwealth in the Criminal Code Act 1995. An extensive background to the Model Criminal Code Project and the Criminal Code Act 1995 is given in the Digest for the Criminal Code Amendment (Theft, Fraud, Bribery and Related Offences) Bill 1999.

Chapter 2 was the first substantive chapter to be included in the Criminal Code. It deals with the general principles of criminal responsibility applying to all offences created by any law of the Commonwealth. These principles include the common elements of offences such as conduct and intention. They also relate to secondary offences such as attempts, complicity, incitement and conspiracy. In addition they relate to general issues such as capacity (eg, the age of criminal responsibility), and the burden and standard of proof.

Subsection 2.2(2) provides that Chapter 2 will commence 5 years after Royal Assent is given to the Criminal Code Act 1995. Assent was given on 15 March 1995 so Chapter 2 is due to commence on 16 March 2000. Since it was enacted there has been some slippage in the implementation timetable of the Model Criminal Code and the enactment of the remaining Chapters of the Commonwealth Criminal Code.(1) There have also been delays in the process of reviewing and/or amending offences in other Commonwealth Acts so that they comply with the principles contained in Chapter 2.(2)

Main Provisions

Proposed Schedule 1, Item 1 defers the commencement of Chapter 2 until 15 December 2001.

Endnotes

  1. Criminal Code Amendment (Theft, Fraud, Bribery and Related Offences) Bill 1999, Second Reading Speech, the Hon. Darryl Williams, House of Representatives, Debates, 24 November 1999, p 12463. Matthew Goode, 'The Model Criminal Code Project', Australian Law Librarian, vol. 5(4), 1997, p. 273.
  2. Criminal Code Amendment (Theft, Fraud, Bribery and Related Offences) Bill 1999, Second Reading Speech, op cit.

Contact Officer and Copyright Details

Nathan Hancock
28 January 2000
Bills Digest Service
Information and Research Services

This paper has been prepared for general distribution to Senators and Members of the Australian Parliament. While great care is taken to ensure that the paper is accurate and balanced, the paper is written using information publicly available at the time of production. The views expressed are those of the author and should not be attributed to the Information and Research Services (IRS). Advice on legislation or legal policy issues contained in this paper is provided for use in parliamentary debate and for related parliamentary purposes. This paper is not professional legal opinion. Readers are reminded that the paper is not an official parliamentary or Australian government document.

IRS staff are available to discuss the paper's contents with Senators and Members
and their staff but not with members of the public.

ISSN 1328-8091
© Commonwealth of Australia 2000

Except to the extent of the uses permitted under the Copyright Act 1968, no part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, including information storage and retrieval systems, without the prior written consent of the Parliamentary Library, other than by Members of the Australian Parliament in the course of their official duties.

Published by the Department of the Parliamentary Library, 2000.

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