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Articles on High Court

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It’s set to be a big few months for the High Court of Australia. What are the key cases to watch? petelawley

The High Court – coming to a Centre Stage near you

In coming months, the High Court – the highest court in Australia and the final arbiter on the meaning of the Constitution – will decide several high-profile cases. These decisions, which may result in…
Queensland attorney-general Jarrod Bleijie has taken decisions about detaining sex offenders in prison after their sentences have been served into his own hands. shutterstock

Listen up, Queensland – courts are for justice, politicians are for politics

There is a good constitutional reason for not allowing politicians to make decisions which result in imprisonment. It’s called the separation of powers and is meant to ensure that politics does not intrude…
The mother (centre) of the four young girls at the centre of a custody dispute arrives at court hearing in Brisbane. AAP/Dan Peled

Child custody: a family law perspective

Last week’s Media Watch programme on the ABC discussed the role of the Australian media in the custody case of four Queensland children that has created headlines across the country over the past few months…
Tents at Nauru that await asylum seekers as their claims are processed. AAP/Department of Immigration and Citizenship

M47 and ASIO case may not prove a victory for refugees after all

The High Court’s decision in the M47 case is likely to be a pyrrhic victory for refugee rights. Last week the High Court ruled that the regulation that allowed the Commonwealth to deny a visa to a refugee…
The final pieces of the historical puzzle around the 1975 Whitlam dismissal are not as sensational as they first seem. Image courtesy of National Archives of Australia. NAA: A6180, 13/11/75/33

Mason’s role in the 1975 dismissal ‘unprecedented’? Hardly …

Much hyperbole has been generated by the recent revelations concerning Sir Anthony Mason’s involvement in the 1975 dismissal, but for the most part it shows ignorance of the past. Earlier this week, The…
Australia’s High Court has dismissed the plain tobacco packaging case brought against the government by tobacco companies. TRACEY NEARMY/AAP

Big Tobacco crashes at first legal hurdle on plain packaging

This morning Australia’s High Court dismissed the plain tobacco packaging case brought against the Australian government by the world’s largest tobacco companies. The companies had challenged the government’s…
Fortescue founder and current non-executive chairman, Andrew Forrest has been a prominent critic of the federal government’s mining tax. The company has finally launched a much anticipated High Court challenge to the tax. AAP

Fortescue launches High Court challenge to mining tax

Perth-based mining giant Fortescue Metals Group has launched a last-minute High Court action against the mining tax, planning to argue the legislation - due to start on July 1 - breaches the Australian…
The High Court landmark decision in the school chaplaincy case is an opportunity for reform. Flickr/petelawley

School chaplaincy case: a missed opportunity for secular education

The historic majority Australian High Court ruling that the National School Chaplaincy Program (NSCP) is “invalid” is a gift to the argument for secular public education. Secular statutes (for example…
Australia’s High Court has found in favour of Internet service provider iiNet in a high profile piracy case that is being closely watched around the world. AAP

iiNet’s Hollywood ending: what does its court victory mean for copyright law?

In what is being billed as iiNet versus Hollywood, the Australian internet service provider has come out an apparent winner after the High Court dismissed a copyright infringement case brought by industry…
Julia Gillard and Immigration Minister Chris Bowen after the High Court ruled the Malaysian Solution invalid. AAP

Onshore processing: what it means for asylum seekers

The Federal Government’s position on handling asylum seekers is in disarray. The High Court has ruled its Malaysia Solution invalid and the Coalition has indicated it will not support moves to amend the…
Protestors outside the High Court during a previous hearing in Malaysian Solution case. AAP

Malaysia Solution: High Court ruling explained

The Gillard government’s refugee policy is in disarray after the full bench of the High Court today made permanent injunctions preventing the removal of asylum seekers to Malaysia. The action was initially…
In Australia, forensic evidence is coming under increasing scrutiny. Andrea Hayward/AAP

The CSI effect: are jurors starstruck by forensic evidence?

FORENSICS AUSTRALIA – Jurors without technical training are frequently required to consider complex forensic evidence. It’s not just a matter of understanding the forensic evidence: in the case of “opposing…
Campaigners in Sydney protesting against the Malaysian Solution. AAP

High Court ruling: the end for the Malaysian Solution?

The High Court’s extension of an injunction preventing the deportation of asylum seekers under the so-called Malaysian Solution threatens to present the Gillard Government with a major political problem…

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