Hinch's Home Detention Includes A Twitter Ban

Controversial broadcaster Derryn Hinch has been sentenced to five months home detention for breaching suppression orders regarding court proceedings. The interesting tech element? The sentence includes a ban on broadcasting, and that extends to Hinch not being allowed to use Twitter throughout that period.

Had Hinch received a custodial sentence, he'd presumably have had no access to Twitter, but it's interesting to see that the courts have specifically identified Twitter as a relevant medium. Proof again, if proof were needed, that Twitter is for more than just discussing breakfast.

Hinch Sentenced To Home Detention [ABC News]


    He has apparently been banned from all forms of electronic media.

    I don't think the judiciary has the power to impose such a blanket ban on electronic communication. I'm no lawyer but I'm pretty sure the only person with this power is your mum, if you don't do the dishes and stuff.

    Or your dad (on the basis of delegated authority).

    well, it's probably a relief- because we won't be hearing from him, and perhaps can collectively move on and pay attention to more important things.

      so lets let our Government hide the identity of paedophiles who relocate to our communities after a jail term, whilst the judiciary are fully aware and state that they are a high risk of reoffending and a risk to the community.....hmmmm

      yeah more important things, like the NBN or Carbon (dioxide) Tax

        I might have more sympathy for this attitude if I didn't think Hinch was in it for his own personal gain. I don't think he was motivated by anything remotely altruistic, but rather that he could get some promotional mileage out of it.

        For what it's worth, his ban also includes not having any employment and not engaging in writing for media outlets (beyond electronic media). It's possible this might be disputed on the basis that this constitutes an abrogation of the "implied freedom of political communication" which has been read into our constitution. Read in by Judges (draw from that what you will).

        The crown would likely make the contention that this set of constraints are suitably adapted and reasonable for the case, because social media played a role in his infringement. As such, access to this should rightfully be constrained so as to limit his opportunity to reoffend. This wouldn't defeat a challenge on the IFPC basis, but it should do just about anything else I can think of.

        If you read the reasons for the home detention order, the Judge has remarked that Hinch got this (and not prison) essentially a matter of Judicial discretion and that the courts have the power to order sentences other than custodial orders.

        Hinch has been a proponent of the abolition of some such non-custodial sentences, notably suspended sentences. The fact of the matter is that suspended sentences help lower prison populations and generally have pretty good offender outcomes (go check the BOCSAR stats if you like). It's ironic that the same ilk which he rails against has kept him out of prison.

        Now, to the "hiding" bit. There's serious sex offenders legislation in a number of states which can allow for monitoring or other conditions upon the release of parties after they complete a custodial sentence. In NSW at least, the crown can also make an application that their detention continue if they refuse to take part in rehabilitation programs and such things whilst in prison.

        In my mind, providing some small measure of privacy following eventual release makes it easier for police to effectively deal with high risk persons (I'm not disputing risk) - when someone like Hinch discusses their names and addresses publicly, I stop seeing any incentive for these people to abide by any conditions on their release or to do much other than go into hiding. I can't reconcile this with his disclosure on the basis of public interest (presumably for a "safer community").

        Also, I'm not a lawyer, not legal advice (you usually have to pay for that), etc. etc. etc.

          I second this.

    Something to add to this debate is that Hinch was fined $10,000 and jailed for 12 days in 1985 for the exact same thing. Urgh.

    I read story by a former NSW SWAT cop who was a siege at a rural farm. The farm had cops all around it and the siege had been going on for a while when Derryn Hinch lands on the front lawn (between the cops and the house) in the channel 7 chopper and goes into the house and interviews the man with the gun.
    This guy has not respect for any laws, he should go to jail.

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