We are physiologically ‘designed’ to feel and respond to fear. Almost universally, we use fear in our interactions with others. However, it is also a tool for politicians to ensure the population remains complaint and accepts injustice.
In colonial times the emphasis was on controlling convicts, eliminating bushrangers, and expropriating Aboriginal land by force frequently involving murder. These activities paid little, if any, attention to due legal processes or fundamental legal rights.
The legal rights outlined are particularly important in providing safeguards against abuses by governments and their agents. The fundamental rights, developed over hundreds of years, have been adopted in international treaties. Some of the rights along with the reasons for their existence are detailed to provide an understanding of their importance and fragility.
This article provides an historical review of injustice in the Australian legal system.
Turner contends that there was a complex relationship between the government, the judiciary and the police that involved ‘an unacknowledged agreement’ where ‘law enforcement is based on violence [that] almost necessarily involves malpractice’ and ‘[y]et none of this can be admitted by Government or Bench, because to do so would be to undermine an institution on which the power of judges and politicians depends’. In the end, corruption provides the foundation for injustice to occur.
In response to instances of miscarriages of justice and a need for better post-conviction review mechanisms, the United Kingdom (in 1997),[i] Scotland (in 1999),[ii] Norway (in 2004)[iii] and New Zealand (in 2020)[iv] have established a Criminal Cases Review Commission. On…