Prediction of the risk of continuing violence to women through inadequate sentencing of male offenders from Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory

Hemming, Andrew (2011) Prediction of the risk of continuing violence to women through inadequate sentencing of male offenders from Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory. Northern Territory Law Journal, 1 (6). pp. 305-328. ISSN 1038-9237

Abstract

This paper examines inadequate sentencing as a predictor of the ongoing cycle of violence inflicted on women by male offenders from Aboriginal communities in the Northern Territory. The contention is made that judges have placed undue weight on the prospects of rehabilitation and too little weight on the protection of the community and deterrence. Compelling statistical evidence reveals that female Aboriginals are the most vulnerable members of Australian society to violence and sexual assault, which it is contended calls for especial vigilance. The paper criticises the court’s interpretation in R v Wunungmurra of s 91 of the Northern Territory National Emergency Response Act 2007 (Cth) which expressly prohibits a court from taking into account customary law as an excuse for criminal behaviour, suggesting that the case demonstrates a long-established pattern of courts favouring the evidence of the perpetrator over the weight given to the victim impact statement. The paper predicts that until the imbalance changes, the male version of customary law will continue to oppress women.


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Item Type: Article (Commonwealth Reporting Category C)
Refereed: Yes
Item Status: Live Archive
Additional Information: Permanent restricted access to published version due to publisher copyright policy.
Depositing User: Mr Andrew Hemming
Faculty / Department / School: Historic - Faculty of Business and Law - School of Law
Date Deposited: 22 Jul 2011 05:06
Last Modified: 03 Jul 2013 00:40
Uncontrolled Keywords: violence; women; aboriginal; Northern Territory; sentencing
Fields of Research (FOR2008): 18 Law and Legal Studies > 1801 Law > 180110 Criminal Law and Procedure
16 Studies in Human Society > 1699 Other Studies in Human Society > 169902 Studies of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Society
18 Law and Legal Studies > 1801 Law > 180101 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Law
Socio-Economic Objective (SEO2008): C Society > 94 Law, Politics and Community Services > 9404 Justice and the Law > 940499 Justice and the Law not elsewhere classified
URI: http://eprints.usq.edu.au/id/eprint/19204

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