Kable v Director of Public Prosecutions (NSW)

Kable V Director Of Public Prosecutions (NSW)

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Kable v Director of Public Prosecutions (NSW)

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Kable v Director of Public Prosecutions for NSW (1996) 189 CLR 51; HCA 24 was a significant case decided in the High Court of Australia regarding the Chapter III rights in the Constitution and the scope of power of state courts vested with federal jurisdiction.


The Parliament of New South Wales passed a bill called the . That legislation authorised the Supreme Court of New South Wales to make an order requiring that a single individual could be detained in prison if the Court was satisfied that that person posed a significant danger to the public. The Act was later amended to authorise the Court to detain a single named person, Gregory Wayne Kable, who was sentenced to five years imprisonment for the manslaughter of his wife.

This legislation was closely modelled on a law passed in Victoria, the Community Protection Act 1990 (Vic), which was enacted to authorise 'preventive detention' for Garry David.

Whilst in gaol, Kable sent threatening letters to the people who denied him access to his children, aged four and two years. After a sharp separation from his children to prison the letters were written whilst in prison in the first 12 months after being denied access to his children. He was subsequently charged and sentenced to an additional 16 months for writing the letters in 1990. Four years later and granted no parole his release from gaol coincided with a state election campaign, in an environment where, allegedly, voters were concerned about "law and...
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