[Index] [Search] [Download] [Related Items] [Help]
CRIMES AMENDMENT REGULATIONS 2003 (NO. 2) 2003 NO. 248
Statutory Rules 2003 No. 248
Issued by the authority of the Minister for Justice and Customs
Subject: Crimes Act 1914
Crimes Amendment Regulations 2003 (No. 2)
Section 91 of the Crimes Act 1914 (the Act) provides that the Governor-General may make regulations, not inconsistent with the Act, prescribing all matters required or permitted by the Act to be prescribed, or necessary or convenient to be prescribed, for carrying out or giving effect to the Act.
The purpose of the regulations is to amend the Crimes Regulations 1990 (the Principal Regulations) to extend the operation of the controlled operations provisions in the Act by prescribing an offence involving firearms as a 'serious Commonwealth offence' for the purposes of section 15HB of the Act.
Part IAB of the Act provides for controlled operations to be undertaken for the purpose of obtaining evidence about serious Commonwealth offences. Section 15H of the Act defines a 'controlled operation' as an operation involving the participation of law enforcement officers, carried out for the purpose of obtaining evidence that may lead to the prosecution of a person for a serious Commonwealth offence, and involving a law enforcement officer or other person in acts, or omissions to act, that would otherwise constitute a Commonwealth offence or an offence against a law of a State or Territory.
Section 15HB of the Act defines 'serious Commonwealth offence' as an offence that is punishable by imprisonment for a period of 3 years or more and that involves a specified type of criminal activity or 'that is of any other prescribed kind'. Regulation 4A of the Principal Regulations prescribes offences as 'serious Commonwealth offences' for the purposes of section 15HB.
Commonwealth of Australia Parliamentary Debates for the Senate on 27 August 2001 indicate that the definition of 'serious Commonwealth offence' was intended to encompass all serious offences that could be investigated by either the National Crime Authority (the predecessor to the Australian Crime Commission (the ACC)) or the Australian Federal Police. The same debates also indicate that the list of criminal activity in that definition was based on the list in the definition of 'relevant offence' in section 4 of the National Crime Authority Act 1984 (now the Australian Crime Commission Act 2002 (the ACC Act)).
The Australian Crime Commission Establishment Act 2002 substituted the definition of 'relevant offence' in the ACC Act with 'serious and organised crime'. The new ACC Act definition includes 'firearms' to ensure that the ACC has the power to investigate the illegal importation and trafficking in firearms. No change was made to the definition of 'serious Commonwealth offence' in the Act to reflect the inclusion of 'firearms' in the ACC Act definition.
The Board of the ACC has issued several determinations authorising the ACC to conduct special investigations in various areas, including firearms. Consequently, there may be a need for the ACC to conduct controlled operations on firearms offences such as cross-border firearms trafficking offences.
The regulations prescribe 'an offence involving firearms' as a serious Commonwealth offence, thus enabling controlled operations to be carried out for the purposes of obtaining evidence that may lead to the prosecution of a person for offences involving firearms. The regulations also ensure that the definition of 'serious Commonwealth offence' in the Act remains consistent with the definition of 'serious and organised crime' in the ACC Act.
The regulations also make a minor technical amendment to accommodate the insertion of a new paragraph.
Details of the regulations are set out in the Attachment.
The regulations commence on gazettal.
Crimes Amendment Regulations 2003 (No. 2)
Regulation 1 describes how the regulations are to be cited.
Regulation 2 provides that the regulations commence on gazettal.
Regulation 3 provides that the Principal Regulations are amended in accordance with Schedule 1 of the regulations.
The regulations extend the operation of the controlled operations provisions of the Act by prescribing an offence involving firearms as a 'serious Commonwealth offence' for the purposes of section 15HB of the Act.
Schedule 1, Item 1 replaces 'violence.' with 'violence;' allowing for the insertion of the new paragraph.
Schedule 1, Item 2 inserts '(c) an offence involving firearms.' prescribing an offence involving firearms as a serious Commonwealth offence for the purposes of section 15HB of the Act.