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ABORIGINAL LAND RIGHTS (NORTHERN TERRITORY) ACT 1976 - SECT 69

Sacred sites

             (1)  A person shall not enter or remain on land in the Northern Territory that is a sacred site.

Penalty

                     (a)  for an individual--200 penalty units or imprisonment for 12 months; or

                     (b)  for a body corporate--1,000 penalty units.

             (2)  Subsection (1) does not prevent an Aboriginal from entering or remaining on a sacred site in accordance with Aboriginal tradition.

          (2A)  In proceedings for an offence against subsection (1), it is a defence if the person enters or remains on the land in performing functions under this Act or otherwise in accordance with this Act or a law of the Northern Territory.

Note:          A defendant bears an evidential burden in relation to the matters in subsection (2A) (see subsection 13.3(3) of the Criminal Code ).

             (3)  Subject to subsection (4), in proceedings for an offence against subsection (1), it is a defence if the person charged proves that he or she had no reasonable grounds for suspecting that the land concerned was a sacred site.

             (4)  Where the charge relates to a sacred site on Aboriginal land, the defence provided by subsection (3) shall not be taken to have been established by a person unless he or she proves that:

                     (a)  his or her presence on the land would not have been unlawful if the land had not been a sacred site; and

                     (b)  he or she had taken all reasonable steps to ascertain the location and extent of the sacred sites on any part of that Aboriginal land likely to be visited by him or her.



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