Queensland Sentencing Advisory Council

The Queensland Sentencing Advisory Council provides independent research and advice, seeks public views and promotes community understanding of sentencing matters.

New podcast: Preventing pathways to the youth justice system

In this youth justice special, Cheryl Leavy, Deputy Commissioner Queensland Family and Child Commission, promotes early intervention when a child is showing clear signs of struggling with life, to prevent a pathway to the juvenile system.

She gives tips on how people can get involved in a safe and responsible way, pointing out that protecting children is everybody’s business.

The conversation focuses on children in out of home care, minor offending and police call outs – which can lead to young people facing the courts.

Listen to the podcast

Majority of drug traffickers sent to prison

Our Sentencing Spotlight on trafficking in dangerous drugs has been released, examining sentencing outcomes for offences finalised in Queensland courts between 1 July 2005 and 30 June 2016.

There were 2596 offenders in total. For 2498 offenders, drug trafficking was their most serious offence (MSO), of which 99.1% received a custodial sentence. The majority (97.8%) of offenders with a drug trafficking MSO pleaded guilty.

The number of sentenced offenders tripled over the review period from 124 in 2005–06 to 413 in 2015–16.

View the Sentencing Spotlight on trafficking in dangerous drugs

Sentence a drug trafficker — Judge for Yourself

Keeping kids safe online podcast

For this edition of our Sentencing Matters podcast, we’ve chatted to Sonya Ryan, founder of the Carly Ryan Foundation.

Sonya’s 15-year-old daughter Carly was killed at the hands of a child sex offender, 47-year-old Garry Newman, whom she met online. Through Carly’s story, the podcast gives insight into those who misrepresent their age to engage with and exploit young people on the internet.

Sonya outlines the work of the Carly Ryan Foundation to keep young people safe from online groomers and prevent them engaging in sexting and image based abuse — which are in fact child exploitation material offences.

Sonya talks about Carly’s Law, which makes it a crime to plan to harm a child under 16 (especially those who misrepresent their age online) punishable by a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison. She also speaks about how the vulnerability of a child should be taken into account during the sentencing process.

Listen to the podcast

Soft on crime? How sentencing can better reflect community values

We have teamed up with Caxton Legal Centre for its Justice in Focus event looking at community values around sentencing.

Recent research findings show that, in 62% of cases, jurors would issue more lenient sentences than judges when surveyed following a guilty verdict. Meanwhile, our Judge for Yourself community education project is successfully engaging Queenslanders on the topic of sentencing with some revealing results.

Join our experts for this free seminar as they talk about these insights and why public education projects are a key part of the access to justice equation.

Panel: Professor Kate Warner, AC (Governor of Tasmania); Margaret McMurdo, AC (former president of the Queensland Court of Appeal); and Dan Rogers (Council member and Secretary of Caxton Legal Centre)

Event details: Tuesday 13 March, 5.30pm to 6.30pm with refreshments to follow; Banco Court, QEII Courts of Law, 415 George St, Brisbane

Register now