Australia Qld govt consults on media shield laws

06:25  18 june  2021
06:25  18 june  2021 Source:   aap.com.au

How the FBI and AFP's AN0M encrypted messaging app snared criminals across the globe

  How the FBI and AFP's AN0M encrypted messaging app snared criminals across the globe The "most significant operation in policing history here in Australia" was only part of a much larger operation, code named Trojan Shield, that spanned the globe.Thousands of police across multiple agencies executed about 500 search warrants, arrested 224 people, charged them with more than 525 offences and seized 104 guns, some $45 million in cash and tonnes of drugs.

Journalists will be protected from revealing confidential whistleblower sources under laws being prepared in Queensland.

a woman smiling for the camera: Shannon Fentiman says a free, independent and effective media is crucial for a strong democracy. © Glenn Hunt/AAP PHOTOS Shannon Fentiman says a free, independent and effective media is crucial for a strong democracy.

Attorney-General Shannon Fentiman has released a discussion paper on proposed media shield laws after the government pledged to bring in new laws in August.

Queensland and Tasmania are the only states without specific media shield laws, although the Apple Isle has a broader shield law covering the general population.

"A free, independent and effective media is crucial for a strong democracy," Ms Fentiman told parliament on Friday.

Proposed powers for charity head are an ‘unconstitutional overreach’

  Proposed powers for charity head are an ‘unconstitutional overreach’ The proposed reforms would mean not-for-profits could be prosecuted for offences their members are simply suspected of committing.It’s been deemed an unconstitutional overreach by many in the sector, as well as unnecessary: in Senate estimates it was revealed only two “activist” charities lost their charity status for breaking the law, yet 59,000 charities will be affected by the reforms.

"Journalists need to be protected when doing their jobs and Queenslanders need to be protected if they come forward with important information."

The discussion paper said no other Australian jurisdiction offered journalists absolute privilege to protect their sources.

Shield laws instead offer qualified privilege, which allows a court to rule it is in the public interest to compel reporters to reveal the identity of sources.

"Introduction of an absolute journalist privilege in Queensland would mean there would be no mechanism for a court to compel the disclosure of the identity of a journalist's source," the paper said.

Video: Federal Court hands down judgement on robodebt scheme (9News.com.au)

"There would be no question of balancing the public interest in the ability for journalists to access sources and communicate facts and opinions to public against the public interest in the court having before it all relevant information in the interests of justice."

Qld funds health, cuts capital spending

  Qld funds health, cuts capital spending The Queensland government will pour money into regional healthcare, but capital spending will fall by $147 million from last year.Treasurer Cameron Dick says $100 million in new funding will go towards regional health and aged care, mostly in the state's remote southwest corner, in next Tuesday's budget.

The paper asks how a journalist should be defined for the purpose of shield laws and whether those protected under shield laws should comply with a recognised code of conduct.

There's a question about who would be defined a source and which courts journalists would be protected in.

Most states protect journalists in supreme and magistrates courts, but South Australia has shield protections for any court and Western Australia extends protections in every legal proceeding in which evidence is or may be given.

The discussion paper also asks whether proposed shield laws would protect the identity of confidential sources from investigations by Queensland's Crime and Corruption Commission.

"We have committed to consider shield laws in the context of recent Queensland case law, and how shield laws are applied in other jurisdictions," Ms Fentiman said.

"This process, in combination with broad consultation, is crucial to developing new laws."

The consultation is set to finish on July 13 with the new laws to be drafted shortly after.

The shield law proposal is a turnaround for the Queensland government, which controversially proposed a gag law on journalists in August before withdrawing it within 24 hours.

Under that proposal, journalists who reported corruption allegations made to the Crime and Corruption Commission during election periods would have faced up to six-months jail or a fine.

Hate-Crime Laws Don’t Work as Their Supporters Intended .
Prosecutors aren’t charging suspects with hate crimes, even in clear-cut cases.Nevertheless, hate-crime laws do have their critics. Some on the left argue that criminal law is the last thing that will help communities of color, and that hate-crime laws will be applied disproportionately against the most marginalized, serving only to worsen our mass-incarceration crisis. Others on the right insist that hate-crime laws penalize people for protected speech and scapegoat individuals for systemic racism.

usr: 0
This is interesting!