The President of the ICJ Australia, Mr John Dowd AO QC, issued a press release on 26 April 2016. “The Government should withdraw the proposed legislation enabling Serious Crime Prevention Orders to be made against individuals and corporations, as being an excessive power in the hands of the police. No case has been made out to extend such wide ranging restrictions on individuals and corporations.
This bill, although expressed to be preventative, will in fact be punitive in function. There has been no prior discussion with legal organisations or civil community groups before setting up a regime that may be used as an alternative to the criminal justice system with its traditional safeguards but may be used in addition to, or subsequent to conviction or acquittal or the service of an offender’s term in prison.”said Mr Dowd.
“There should be an inquiry through the NSW Law Reform Commission as to the necessity of such legislation and to consider what safeguards may be imposed to protect persons, corporations or unincorporated associations who may be affected by the proposed legislation.”, said Mr Dowd.“The fact that similar legislation in the UK exists, does not justify bringing in such legislation, being the first in Australia, without proper community consultation and a demand being shown for it.”