ON THIS DAY in 1976, the High Court of Australia delivered Murphyores Inc Pty Ltd v Commonwealth (“Fraser Island case”)  HCA 20; (1976) 136 CLR 1 (14 April 1976).
The court held that the Commonwealth could validly legislate over the environment through its trade and commerce powers under the Constitution. As a result, sand mining licensed by the Queensland Government was prohibited on the Fraser Island – the largest sand island in the world.
Fraser Island later became part of the Register of the National Estate, National Heritage List and the World Heritage List.
ON THIS DAY IN 1929, section 10 of the NSW Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999 (formerly known as section 556A of the Crimes Act 1900) was added to the Crimes Act 1900 through the passage of the Crimes (Amendment) Act 1929 No 2.
Dismissal of charges and conditional discharge of offender
10 Dismissal of charges and conditional discharge of offender
(1) Without proceeding to conviction, a court that finds a person guilty of an offence may make any one of the following orders:
(a) an order directing that the relevant charge be dismissed,
(b) an order discharging the person on condition that the person enter into a good behaviour bond for a term not exceeding 2 years,
(c) an order discharging the person on condition that the person enter into an agreement to participate in an intervention program and to comply with any intervention plan arising out of the program.
(2) An order referred to in subsection (1) (b) may be made if the court is satisfied:
(a) that it is inexpedient to inflict any punishment (other than nominal punishment) on the person, or
(b) that it is expedient to release the person on a good behaviour bond.
(2A) An order referred to in subsection (1) (c) may be made if the court is satisfied that it would reduce the likelihood of the person committing further offences by promoting the treatment or rehabilitation of the person.
(2B) Subsection (1) (c) is subject to Part 8C.
(3) In deciding whether to make an order referred to in subsection (1), the court is to have regard to the following factors:
(a) the person’s character, antecedents, age, health and mental condition,
(b) the trivial nature of the offence,
(c) the extenuating circumstances in which the offence was committed,
(d) any other matter that the court thinks proper to consider.
(4) An order under this section has the same effect as a conviction:
(a) for the purposes of any law with respect to the revesting or restoring of stolen property, and
(b) for the purpose of enabling a court to give directions for compensation under Part 4 of the Victims Compensation Act 1996 , and
(c) for the purpose of enabling a court to give orders with respect to the restitution or delivery of property or the payment of money in connection with the restitution or delivery of property.
(5) A person with respect to whom an order under this section is made has the same right to appeal on the ground that the person is not guilty of the offence as the person would have had if the person had been convicted of the offence.