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Policy Bulletin 2019 / 8 (Revocation of Commonwealth Parole)

20 May 2019

The Legal Aid NSW Board has approved a policy allowing for representation of clients in revocation of Commonwealth Parole matters.

Background

Parole in relation to Commonwealth offences is determined by the Commonwealth Parole Office in the Attorney-General’s Department. The State Parole Authority does not have any jurisdiction. The provisions which concern the revocation of parole for a Commonwealth offence are set out in the Crimes Act (Cth) (1914), and include:

  • Section 19AQ: Automatic revocation of parole for any offence committed while on parole where the sentence imposed is 3 months or more.
  • Section19AV: A warrant may be issued for the arrest of the person where parole has been revoked and the person is to be brought before a “prescribed authority” as soon as practicable. A prescribed authority is defined to include a Magistrate in the State or Territory.
  • Section19AW: The Magistrate has options regarding the revocation of a parole warrant and must ensure certain safeguards are complied with. Relevantly, the Magistrate can fix a new non-parole period in respect of the outstanding sentence. The Magistrate can decline to fix a new non-parole period in certain circumstances.

This means that where a warrant is issued for the arrest of a person following revocation of parole, the proceedings are heard in the Local Court. There is also a right of appeal to the Supreme Court under s19AY of the Crimes Act (Cth).

What has changed?

Legal aid is available for Commonwealth Parole matters in the Local Court subject to means and for appeals subject to means and merit.

For full details, see: Criminal Law Policy 4.3.10: Revocation of parole for Commonwealth Offences. For appeals, see: Criminal Law Policy 4.6: Appeals from the Local Court

Commencement date

Legal aid is available for applications received on and after 20 May 2019.

Contact for further information

Please contact the Client Eligibility Unit for any questions about the changes on aideen.mcgarrigle@legalaid.nsw.gov.au or 9219 5701.