Judges don’t change laws. They apply laws. Parliament changes laws.
That’s true however he knows who is who in “the elite boys club” and has influence.
If its wrong and unjust then that’s what it is.
The law does not need changing, the minimum level of time given needs to change.
And judges should never be political beings because that compromises their position. There are enough people who know that you should be directing your angst at. You use the judges as advisors on a panel that determines sentencing.
Good insight. Thanks.
The role of the Victorian Law Reform Commission - which consults extensively in the community - should not be overlooked in securing Parliament’s law amendments - as it has previously done in regard to family violence ( including legal definitions)
At the national level, there is also the contribution of the Australian Law Reform Commission.
Law reform is not solely dependent on a politician taking up a cause.
You have taken a narrow view - Ristevski’s sentence is about how the legal system treats the crime of manslaughter - It has nothing to do with women or children or anything else.
How can you prove it was a pre-medicated act ? - Many killings occur in the spur of the moment - I love you line about saving taxpayers money - There are some who want the accused to be thrown to the wolves without much legal recourse - Yet you are complaining that Ristevski pleaded guilty - Can you inform me who was on the take.
Semantics. This verdict by virtue of the ‘legal system’ has done nothing to strengthen societal view that collectively we should be doing more to protect women from violent men.
The sentence, in my opinion, is completely inadequate. Not in any way do I blame anyone involved in the case for this.
Layman, a term used by lawyers to identify someone who doesn’t obtain obscene amounts of money to clear the name of the guilty.
Do you have a vested interest in this ?
Your views just seem over the top and driven by something.
Think you are taking the wrong pills.
We are not arguing semantics - As has been previously posted the Ristevski sentence was in line with previous cases - It has no relationship to violence against women or children or people with pink spots or people from specific religions - The sentence covers the whole of society - Whether the sentence is inadequate or excessive is a separate issue.
In the sentencing ruling the judge refers to a marriage of 27 years, that she was killed by him in the family home etc. He would have chosen his words carefully and he was giving some context to domestic violence in consideration of the length of sentence
We’ll go around in circles, I understand your point, but I disagree. It does have a relationship to violence against women because a man has admitted to killing his wife.
Very few will understand, care or seek information about the law and how it is applied all they will see is that a man killed his wife, lied about it, buried her body and has been given a non-parole period of six years. I am commenting on this sentence alone and it is not in any way right that a person can kill, admit it and be back on the streets in six years. That’s my opinion.
Respectfully disagree. Here’s why.
Borce Ristevski misled the police (and his family).
He only plead guilty to manslaughter after Justice Christopher Beale ruled that Ristevski’s post-offence conduct could prove that he killed his wife, but that it could not prove murderous intent. As you well know, as a solicitor, evidence of murderous intent must be given for a murder case to proceed. Central to the prosecution’s case were Ristevski’s diabolical actions post his wife’s death. Add these to the lies, deliberate omissions, misleading statements, etc. Pieced together, the prosecution felt that it had a strong case that Ristevski’s post-offence conduct was enough evidence to prove his murderous intent. Justice Beale, however, ruled that his post-offence conduct could not prove murderous intent. This is where he has erred.
In the Baden-Clay case, Baden-Clay was initially convicted of murdering his wife (at this point - different to the Ristevski case). No witnesses to the killing, no injuries identified after the body was discovered (some time later), Baden-Clay’s consistent denials, etc. Nonetheless, he was found guilty. Here is where there is an overlap. The Court of Appeal overturned the murder conviction (and life imprisonment sentence imposed) and reduced it to manslaughter for the exact same reason that Justice Beale ruled in the Ristevski case. That being, that Baden-Clay’s post-offence conduct could only show that he was involved in his wife’s death, but not that he intended to kill her.
Fortunately, the High Court (made up of more ‘formidable’ and ‘intelligent’ judges than Justice Beale) overturned the Court of Appeal’s decision. This set a ‘new and massive precedent’ - namely that post-offence conduct can indeed prove murderous intent. The High Court decision had gargantuan consequences for future trials. Judges needed to read up and correctly interpret this precedent. The Weissensteiner direction may have been available in this case (something @saladin was discussing earlier). In other words, if Ristevski knew something, he should have admitted what he knew. If he was directed by counsel not to say anything/give any evidence, then it should still have been put to the jury to decide whether or not his concealment was evidence of intent. Justice Beale chose to make his own ruling here.
Given that the Baden-Clay High Court decision was made in 2016, I can only surmise that Justice Beale hasn’t given enough thought to it and has simply chosen to go down a lesser route. Is that because he felt that the evidence of post-offence conduct was too weak to infer murderous intent or that post-offence conduct itself does not infer murderous intent? I’d like to know.
I’m aware of the Baden Clay case. Do you think that Beale wasn’t? Due you really think a Supreme Court judge wasn’t aware of High Court dicta on a similar issue?
The Baden Clay ruling was simply that his conduct in that case could be held to imply a murderous intent. It doesn’t apply to all types of conduct (the conduct here was very different). Beale was perfectly entitled to make the pre trial ruling he did. The prosecution didn’t choose to appeal that pre trial ruling and for good reason. On a trial this high profile, if there was the slightest chance that he had made an error they would have marched straight across the road to the Court of Appeal
Strange that, Beale extensively addressed Baden Clay and other precedents In his ruling on murderous intent, distinguished it on the facts, did not make any assertions that post offence conduct irrelevant.
To note also that DPP did not contest that ruling.
Same question you just asked and my answer is no.
The High Court found this (thankfully). Not the Court of Appeal - which just goes to show that judges in lower courts do make mistakes. Your inference is that they don’t.
Yes, but it doesn’t make it right.
What was the reason? Vague. They chose to secure a conviction for a lesser offence. Simple.
The details re the differences between this case and the Baden Clay case are in Beale’s published reasons.
I’m not saying that courts never make mistakes. I’m saying that a mistake wasn’t made here.
They didn’t go to the court of appeal because they knew the ruling was sound (and would have got advice to that effect). It wasn’t a pragmatic decision to secure a conviction on a lesser offence! They win on appeal, they can run their murder trial, they lose on appeal they can still get their manslaughter conviction. It’s like appealing to the tribunal when you won’t get an extra week if you lose - a free shot at the stumps. They had nothing to lose by appealing, but they didn’t do so because the ruling was sound.
I do understand the passion on this case, I really do. But not every unsatisfactory outcome is because a judge fkd up. Some of them are just because that’s how the law works.
Again, this is Judge Beale’s interpretation. It doesn’t make it correct. Judges err all the time. This is why there are higher courts of appeal. Speak to ten lawyers and they will all give you a different take on his interpretation. Nothing strange about that at all.
Irrelevant. Your implication that this is because they agreed with the ruling is wrong. They may have or they may have simply chosen to secure a conviction for a lesser offence. I think you will find that they chose the latter.