New series breaks down appeal cases of interest

The Queensland Sentencing Advisory Council is taking a closer look at sentencing with its new ‘Case in Focus’ series, breaking down Court of Appeal judgments in an easy-to-understand way.

The series provides interactive summaries that run through points of law and sentencing principles discussed in high-profile or interesting appellate court decisions in a simple and user-friendly format.

The council Chair, retired judge John Robertson, said the new series was designed to make cases from the Court of Appeal and other appellate courts readily accessible for everyone.

“Our Case in Focus series is for everyone from lawyers to non-lawyers and aims to help inform the community about how sentencing principles and factors are applied in cases, and the basis on which appeals are initiated and decided,” Mr Robertson said.

“The first two cases in the series involve dangerous driving causing death and highlight how every case and appeal is different.

“This is an offence that can be committed by anyone and, for that reason alone, attracts a lot of media and community interest.”


One case considers an appeal against a woman’s sentence for the dangerous operation of a vehicle causing her younger sister’s death while under the influence of alcohol, while the other looks at an appeal against a man’s sentence for the dangerous operation of a vehicle (a truck) causing the death of a woman standing by the driver’s door of her vehicle, parked legally outside her house.

Individual cases are summarised and linked to the actual judgment on the Queensland Courts website for those who want more in-depth information.

“Our Case in Focus resources can help the community to better understand appeals and the court system,” Mr Robertson said.

The Queensland Sentencing Advisory Council’s Case in Focus series will be an ongoing project.

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