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Other Jurisdictions Judgments and Decisions

Read selected decisions made in other jurisdictions, which are relevant to the Children's Court. 

DFFH v West (a pseudonym) [2022] VChC 2 (1421)

Child protection – preterm twins with marks – medical imaging, repeat x-rays – protection applications by emergency care under s.162(1)(c) and (e) CYFA – medical expert witnesses’ evidence regarding the marks and single fracture to each child – accepted that the marks were not deliberately inflicted – unlikely that the parents will inadvertently cause further marks to the children in providing care in the future – medical imaging and timing of rib fractures. 

Magistrate Stead 

16 December 2022

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DPP v Kirk Reese (a pseudonym) [2020] VCC 1670

Catchwords: Criminal law – application for judge alone fitness investigation and special hearing – Part 11 of the Crimes (Mental Impairment and Unfitness to be Tried) Act 1997 –accused unfit to be tried – consent of both parties to judge alone special hearing – interests of justice – delay – unfit young accused awaiting trial – no complex or contentious issues –application for judge alone special hearing granted.

Judge Chambers

19 October 2020

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Catchwords: CRIMINAL LAW — Appeal from decisions of President of the Children’s Court — Appeal against conviction on 2 charges and sentence on all charges — State and federal sexual offences committed against appellant’s baby daughter — Whether general deterrence relevant to sentencing a child for federal offences — Appellant convicted and sentenced to 12 months’ detention in a Youth Justice Centre — Crimes Act 1958 (Vic) ss 49A, 49D, 49F — Criminal Code (Cth) s 474.20(1)(a)(ii), s 474.19(1)(a)(ii) — Crimes Act 1914 (Cth) ss 16A, 20C — Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 (Vic) s 362 — CNK v R (2011) 32 VR 641 — DPP v Hutchinson (a pseudonym) [2018] VSCA 153. 

Justice Beale


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Secretary of the DHHS v Children's Court of Victoria & Emily Powell (a pseudonym) [2020] VSC 144

Catchwords: Appeal - Children's Court of Victoria - Interim accommodation order - Whether in best interest of child to remain with mother - Whether unacceptable risk of harm to child - Unacceptable risk not made out - Whether COVID-19 pandemic creates unacceptable risk to child's best interests if child does not remain with mother - Child to remain with mother - Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 (Vic) ss 8, 10, 271, 276.

Justice John Dixon J
27 March 2020

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PT v Director of Public Prosecutions [2019] VCC 836

Catchwords: Criminal Law - Applicant child charged with a Category A serious youth offence of aggravated home invasion for which he was refused a summary hearing and determination in the Children’s Court pursuant to s. 356(6) of the Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 (CYFA) - Applicant now seeks an order pursuant to s.168 (1) of the Criminal Procedure Act 2009 (CPA) for the transfer of the charge to the Children’s Court – Onus on applicant under s. 168A(1) to show there is a substantial and compelling reason why the charge should be heard and determined summarily – In determining whether the threshold test is satisfied the Court must, under s. 168A(2), have regard to the intention of Parliament that a charge for a category A serious youth offence should not normally be heard and determined summarily – Application of the Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 – Application for transfer refused.

His Honour Judge Gamble
22 May 2019

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ZD v Secretary to the Department of Health and Human Services [2017] VSC 806

Catchwords: Courts – Appeal from decision of Children’s Court Magistrate in respect of condition to vaccinate children imposed in the best interests of the child as part of interim accommodation order pursuant to s 263(7) of the Children Youth and Families Act 2005 – Whether decision beyond power or otherwise misconceived nature and scope of power – Whether power extends to making decisions with significant long-term consequences for child – Appeal dismissed. HUMAN RIGHTS – Best interests of the child – Charter of Human Rights and Responsibilities Act 2006 considered. Statutory Interpretation – Meaning of ‘any condition’ for the purpose of s 263(7) of the Children Youth and Families Act 2005.

Justice JA Osborn
22 December 2017

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