Foreign Proceedings (Prohibition Of Certain Evidence) Bill 1976


Index

Bills Digest no. 56 1976

Foreign Proceedings (Prohibition Of Certain Evidence) Bill 1976

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
Summary
Background
Contact Officer & Copyright Details


Passage History

Foreign Proceedings (Prohibition Of Certain Evidence) Bill 1976

Date introduced: 18 November 1976

House: House of Representatives

Purpose

This measure (which has already been passed by both Houses of the Parliament) enables the Attorney-General to prohibit the giving of evidence or the production of documents to foreign tribunals.

Summary

Clause 5 of the Bill empowers the Attorney-General to make orders prohibiting the production whether directly or indirectly of documents which are in Australia to foreign tribunals or prohibiting the giving of evidence about such documents to such tribunals directly or indirectly.

Orders may be made in relation to a particular foreign tribunal, a class of foreign tribunals or all foreign tribunals; they may be made in relation to a particular document or to a class or documents; and they may be directed to a particular person, a class of persons or to persons generally.

Restrictions are placed on the Attorneys-General s powers by clause 4. These restrictions, however, are not enforceable in the courts (sub-clause 4 (2)). The Attorney-General is only to exercise his powers where this is desirable to protect the national interest or where a foreign tribunal is exercising powers not consistent with international law or comity.

Clause 6 of the Bill provides for service of orders made by the Attorney-General and clause 7 makes it an offence punishable by a fine of $5,000 or 6 months imprisonment (in the case of an individual) or a fine of $10,000 (in the case of a company) to contravene an order.

Background

Although this legislation has been prompted by various proceedings in the United States in relation to that country s anti-trust laws, it is not limited to those proceedings or that country.

Contact Officer and Copyright Details

Law and Government Group
29 November 1976
Bills Digest Service
Information and Research Services

This paper has been prepared to support the work of the Australian Parliament using information available at the time of production. The views expressed do not reflect an official position of the Information and Research Service, nor do they constitute professional legal opinion.

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 2006

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 Parliamentary Library, 2006.

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