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Justice Refshauge told to do his homework before he’s allowed out to play

By johnboy - 21 January 2013 6

The ABC has word that Simon Corbell isn’t going to launch a judicial commission to investigate Justice Richard Refshauge’s huge backlog of justice denied.

Late last year the ACT Bar Association made a formal complaint, under the Judicial Commissions Act, about Justice Richard Refshauge’s backlog of reserved civil judgements.

ACT Attorney-General Simon Corbell has dismissed the complaint and will appoint an acting judge to give Justice Refshauge time off the bench to deal with the backlog.

ACT Bar Association president Greg Stretton says it is a good decision.

“The litigants who have been waiting for years are only interested in getting their judgements. If this is the way that to encourage that then it’s to be applauded,” he said.

But he says the situation makes it clear the ACT Supreme Court needs a fifth judge permanently.

ACT Law Society president Noor Blumer agrees it is a constructive move.

What’s Your opinion?


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6 Responses to
Justice Refshauge told to do his homework before he’s allowed out to play
bundah 8:48 am 20 Feb 13

rossau said :

It not civil, it’s plain criminal.

All I hear about are the delays in Refshauge’s civil case backlog. And for those concerned that is distressing and unacceptable.

But what Simon Corbell has not let slip is that people have waited in gaol until Refshauge’s late judgements have released them. Yes, held without bail until released when his judgement was handed down. Incarcerated indefinitely until said Justice got around to returning freedom. No sentence of jail but jailed nonetheless as if it were ‘at her Majesty’s pleasure’.

Not even Noor Blumer -president of the ACT Law Society- who is well aware of criminal proceedings resulting in unjust incarcerations has let slip that individuals have waited in jail for months until Refshauge freed them.

Now Simon Corbell has dismissed the ACT Bar Association’s complaint against Justice Refshauge. I’ll let you know that Mr Corbell is well aware also of the backlog which included remandees incarcerated awaiting Refshauge’s delayed judgements.

Judgements that eventually freed them ‘without penalty’ except for that unavoidable delay in prison. With no offer of compensation it’s unsurprising that Corbell avoids an inquiry.

Freedom is a notion: don’t let anyone tell you it’s a right.

To be fair many of those awaiting judgement/sentencing probably deserved to be held without bail.Having said that the fact remains that Corbell has been in denial and therefore incompetent for years given that he has chosen not to address the clearly obvious need to appoint additional judges to cope with the workload.The people of the ACT deserve so much better!

rossau 11:42 pm 19 Feb 13

It not civil, it’s plain criminal.

All I hear about are the delays in Refshauge’s civil case backlog. And for those concerned that is distressing and unacceptable.

But what Simon Corbell has not let slip is that people have waited in gaol until Refshauge’s late judgements have released them. Yes, held without bail until released when his judgement was handed down. Incarcerated indefinitely until said Justice got around to returning freedom. No sentence of jail but jailed nonetheless as if it were ‘at her Majesty’s pleasure’.

Not even Noor Blumer -president of the ACT Law Society- who is well aware of criminal proceedings resulting in unjust incarcerations has let slip that individuals have waited in jail for months until Refshauge freed them.

Now Simon Corbell has dismissed the ACT Bar Association’s complaint against Justice Refshauge. I’ll let you know that Mr Corbell is well aware also of the backlog which included remandees incarcerated awaiting Refshauge’s delayed judgements.

Judgements that eventually freed them ‘without penalty’ except for that unavoidable delay in prison. With no offer of compensation it’s unsurprising that Corbell avoids an inquiry.

Freedom is a notion: don’t let anyone tell you it’s a right.

Chop71 9:55 am 22 Jan 13

bundah said :

Or maybe it’s a case of we need to accept the simple reality that the judges and minister are performing to their maximum ability which is obviously inadequate so an additional two judges are clearly needed in order for the public to get judgements with a reasonable period of time.

This whole town has been in holiday mode since the election, it’s such a deep slumber, i’m not sure if we will ever awake.

bundah 9:14 am 22 Jan 13

Or maybe it’s a case of we need to accept the simple reality that the judges and minister are performing to their maximum ability which is obviously inadequate so an additional two judges are clearly needed in order for the public to get judgements with a reasonable period of time.

Alderney 8:56 am 22 Jan 13

deepsouf said :

When you think about it, this is reasonably absurd. One of the four judges has been removed from sitting on the bench for an indefinite period, in which he is supposed to write 20+ decisions that he should have written 18 months ago. At least one of the other judges also has a significant backlog of reserved decisions. This in the tiny jurisdiction of the ACT where I would estimate 70% of the proceedings are straightforward criminal or personal injury cases. This while we are paying each judge just shy of $400,000 this year.

Something quite dramatic needs to occur. Corbell’s resignation would be a start. A fifth judge is probably necessary for community access to justice, although I think the current four would have no trouble handling the workload if they developed a bit more professionalism. Many lawyers are desperately hoping ACT Labor picks somebody from outside the local Supreme Court (a Federal Court judge or a top silk) to be the next ACT Chief Justice when that position is filled later this year. But with our government seeming not to care how dysfunctional our courts are, the odds are very slim.

Maybe it’s as simple of the electors in the ACT changing the government so the people who answer to the politicians get a bit of a shake-up.

There seems to be a direct causal relationship between familiarity and contempt.

deepsouf 1:21 am 22 Jan 13

When you think about it, this is reasonably absurd. One of the four judges has been removed from sitting on the bench for an indefinite period, in which he is supposed to write 20+ decisions that he should have written 18 months ago. At least one of the other judges also has a significant backlog of reserved decisions. This in the tiny jurisdiction of the ACT where I would estimate 70% of the proceedings are straightforward criminal or personal injury cases. This while we are paying each judge just shy of $400,000 this year.

Something quite dramatic needs to occur. Corbell’s resignation would be a start. A fifth judge is probably necessary for community access to justice, although I think the current four would have no trouble handling the workload if they developed a bit more professionalism. Many lawyers are desperately hoping ACT Labor picks somebody from outside the local Supreme Court (a Federal Court judge or a top silk) to be the next ACT Chief Justice when that position is filled later this year. But with our government seeming not to care how dysfunctional our courts are, the odds are very slim.

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