Federal and State similarities
If you are convicted of a federal offence, that is – an offence created by Commonwealth statute, you will be sentenced under the federal Crimes Act, which contains sentencing principles of federal offences.
State based offences, traffic offences, interpersonal violence (assaults), domestic violence, sex offences, and most other offences you can think of, will fall under the Sentencing Act 1997 (Tas).
Sentencing Advisory Council
The Tasmanian Sentencing Advisory Council is a Tasmanian body that advises the Tasmanian Attorney-General on sentencing issues. To date, the Council has published Advice on sentencing issues around assaults on emergency workers and arson. These reports resulted in changes to legislation.
Currently, the Sentencing Advisory Council is working on four projects – sex offence sentencing, family violence sentencing, a Tasmanian sentencing database and the impact of conviction/non-conviction.
On the Council are several eminent academics and members of the criminal justice system, including Emeritus Professor Arie Freiberg OAM, Professor Kate Warner OAM, author of the seminal textbook on sentencing in Tasmania, Sentencing in Tasmania and Professor Rob White, author of Crimes Against Nature, a textbook on environmental crime. Other members of the Council are distinguished members of the Police Service, the Office of Public Prosecutions, and the Tasmanian legal community.
There are Sentencing Advisory Councils in Victoria and NSW; the Council in Queensland was dissolved. There is also a sentencing council in the UK, which has responsibility for providing sentencing guidelines for UK courts.