On 10 October 2012, the Crimes Legislation Amendment (Serious Drugs,
Identity Crime and Other Measures) Bill 2012 (Bill) was introduced into the
House of Representatives by the Attorney-General, the Hon. Nicola Roxon MP.
On 11 October 2012, the Senate referred the provisions of the
Bill to the Legal and Constitutional Affairs Legislation Committee (committee) for
inquiry and report by 19 November 2012.
The House of Representatives passed the Bill on 30 October 2012
and, on 31 October 2012, the Bill was introduced into the Senate.
Purpose of the Bill
The Bill proposes amendments to the Australian Federal Police Act
1979, the Crimes Act 1914, the Crimes (Superannuation
Benefits) Act 1989, the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Criminal
Code), the Customs Act 1901, and the Law Enforcement Integrity
Commissioner Act 2006.
The Bill is comprised of three schedules which seek to strengthen and
improve existing criminal laws and justice arrangements in the Commonwealth
- Schedule 1 aims to strengthen the Commonwealth's serious drug
offences framework, by transferring the list of substances to which serious
drug offences apply from the Criminal Code to regulations;
- Schedule 2 expands the existing identity crime provisions and
will establish new offences and powers relating to air travel and the use of
- Schedule 3 of the bill proposes amendments to:
(i)clarify the functions of the Law Enforcement Integrity Commissioner;
(ii)increase the value of the pecuniary penalty unit for Commonwealth
criminal offences from $110 to $170; and
(iii)ensure superannuation orders in cases of employee corruption in the
Australian Public Service are treated consistently.
The Attorney-General explained that the measures:
...will ensure that the Commonwealth criminal law remains up to
date and effective, particularly in combating serious and organised crime and
Conduct of the inquiry
The committee advertised the inquiry in The Australian on 24 October 2012,
and wrote to a number of stakeholders inviting submissions by 26 October 2012.
Details of the inquiry, including the Bill and associated documents, were made
available on the committee's website at www.aph.gov.au/senate_legalcon.
The committee received three submissions, which are listed at Appendix
1. No public hearings were held for the inquiry.
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