Friday, October 28, 2005

Legislation passed since 2002

Before 2002 there were no specific 'anti-terrorism laws' in Australia. There were laws covering related areas in criminal investigation and law enforcement, criminal procedure and international cooperation, specific offences - including those concerned with chemical and biological weapons, WMDs, foreign incursions - proscription of certain organizations, entry and deportation of aliens, intelligence services, and suspect financial transactions.

After September 11, the Government introduced a series of legislative amendments, seeking to facilitate investigation and criminalization of conduct that might be connected with, or give rise to, terrorism:

  • Security Legislation Amendment (Terrorism) Act 2002 (adds into the Criminal Code a definition of “terrorism” and a series of offences, all of which are punishable with life imprisonment: engaging in a terrorist act; providing or receiving training for a terrorist act; possessing things connected with a terrorist act; collecting documents likely to facilitate a terrorist act; acts in preparation for a terrorist act; also allows proscription of “terrorist organizations”)

  • Suppression of Financing of Terrorism Act 2002 (criminalizes collection and provision of funds for terrorism, including where person is reckless as to whether funds will be used to finance terrorist acts, and allows for freezing of assets; also requires cash dealers to report suspect transactions)

  • Criminal Code Amendment (Suppression of Terrorist Bombing) Act 2002 (gives effect to International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings, creates new offences of placing explosive devices in public places, government facilities, public transport systems — due to constitutional limitations, though, does not apply to offences entirely internal to Australia, involving only Australian individuals or bodies corporate as defendants, victims etc)

  • Border Security Legislation Amendment Act 2002 (strengthens border surveillance and surveillance of movement of people, control of Customs over movement of goods)

  • Telecommunications Interception Legislation Amendment Act 2002 (amends the Telecommunications (Interception) Act 1979 to permit intercepting law enforcement agencies to seek telecommunications interception warrants in connection with the investigation of terrorism offences set out in the Criminal Code Act)

  • Australian Security Intelligence Organisation Amendment (Terrorism) Act 2003 (empowers ASIO to obtain a warrant to detain and question a person who may have information important to the gathering of intelligence in relation to terrorist activity)

Australian anti-terrorism legislation, 2004 and ASIO at Wikipedia

Secrecy, Silence and State Terror, by Joo-Cheong Tham and Jude McCulloch

Submissions by Dr Jenny Hocking (Monash University) to Parliamentary Committees regarding 2002 legislation

Discussion of 2004 widening of police powers at the Center for Security Studies, Zurich

Please see Analyses, below, as well as our Case Studies section (still under development ... we shall redouble our efforts.)


Post a Comment

<< Home