Serious sex offenders – Detention orders


We are now seeing a spate of judgments about the new regime of detention orders which can be ordered for “serious sex offenders” whose sentences have come to an end but who are deemed to be a threat to society.  The latest of these is Attorney General v Jamieson [2007] NSWSC 465 . 

The first step is that the Attorney-General applies for an interim detention order: this is almost irresistible because the state’s evidence must be considered at this stage on the basis that it will be accepted and cannot really be argued with. 

I don’t like these orders, and it’s clear that the judges who are being required to make them are not all very happy about them either.  If there are to be many more such orders, then the people who are subject to them should not be detained in prisons, which are conceived as punitive places, but rather in institutions which acknowledge the purely preventative basis for their detention.

2 Responses to “Serious sex offenders – Detention orders”

  1. Legal Eagle Says:

    At the beginning of this year, I had a look at the Victorian Sentencing Commission’s paper on the topic, and thought of a few cases which raised these issues (see post here.) I think you might be interested in it.

    I can see that in some limited circumstances it might be appropriate to keep people in detention, but I think it should be very much the exception rather than the rule.

    Like you, I would be more happy if such offenders were placed in institutions rather than gaols too. But on the other hand, I want my little daughter to be safe…

    It’s a hard balancing act.

  2. Serious sex offenders - Detention orders 2 « Stumbling on melons Says:

    […] Serious sex offenders – Detention orders 2 The latest orders made under this legislation  are reported in the press here.  See also my previous post/. […]

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