Sentencing laws to be reformed

WA’s sentencing laws will be significantly overhauled for the first time in more than 20 years under a reform package to target serious violent offenders and give a greater voice to victims and their families.

The Sentencing Legislation Amendment Bill 2016 brings existing sentencing legislation up to date with community expectations about how justice should be administered.

It aims at enhancing community safety, providing a greater range of sanctions available to the courts, and allowing more victims of crime to make a victim impact statement to the courts.

Proposed changes include stricter controls through two-year post-sentence supervision orders – including via GPS tracking – for those convicted of serious violent offences, and other serious offences such as arson.

Further, a broadening of the definition of a victim of crime to include both the primary victim and that person’s immediate family, which will give a voice to a greater range of victims.