• Publication Date: January 31, 2020
  • EAN: 9781760021795
  • 1504 pages; 6" x 8⅝"

Criminal Laws, 7/e

Materials and Commentary on Criminal Law and Process of NSW


Product Description

The 7th edition of Criminal Laws maintains the distinctive features which have established the book as a leading Australian work for 30 years. The new edition features an expanded author team with expertise across criminal law, criminalisation theory, policing, criminology and crime policy. Criminal Laws has been completely updated to take account of important new legislation, case law and policy. It incorporates insights from the latest research on the impact of criminal laws and the associated practices of police, prosecutors, courts and prisons.

As one review put it, this text is simultaneously a “textbook, casebook, handbook and reference work”. As such it is ideal for criminal law and criminal justice courses as a teaching text, combining as it does primary sources with extensive critical commentary and a contextual perspective. It is likewise indispensable to practitioners for its detailed coverage of substantive law and its extensive references and inter-disciplinary approach make it a first point of call for researchers from all disciplines.

Highlights of the 7th edition include discussion and analysis of:

  • new offences to address technology-facilitated gendered violence and harassment;
  • changes to domestic violence prevention law and policy;
  • recent developments in the interpretation and operation of sexual assault laws, including the Lazarus case;
  • latest developments in homicide law, including the new offence of supply of drugs causing death;
  • expanded and updated analysis of the offence of ‘habitually consorting’ and other developments in pre-emptive association-based criminalisation;
  • major changes to sentencing law and practice, including the abolition of suspended sentences;
  • controversies over police powers and practices including use of sniffer dogs, strip searches and mobile phone searches;
  • important criminal law and sentencing decisions from the High Court of Australia and the NSW Court of Criminal Appeal, including while maintaining the book’s long- standing commitment to featuring judgments from the Local Court magistrates and District Court judges;
  • the findings and recommendations of recent Royal Commissions, law reform commission inquiries and other investigations;
  • changes driven by technology and ‘efficiency’, including the growth of ‘on the spot’ fines as a method of criminal law enforcement, and increasing reliance on audio-visual links (AVL) in lieu of the defendant’s physical presence in the courtroom;
  • up-to-date statistics on reported crime and criminal law enforcement practices, combined with narrative and other qualitative forms that illuminate the lived experience of crime victims, accused persons and offenders;
  • developments in criminal law scholarship, including critiques of ‘algorithmic justice’, empirical research on criminalisation as a public policy mechanism and work that challenges the conventional understanding of fines as a benign form of punishment;
  • the burgeoning market for true crime podcasts, including the implications for addressing miscarriages of justice.

Preface to the Seventh Edition
Table of Cases
Table of Statutes

Some Themes
Criminalisation and Penality
Components of Criminal Offences
The Criminal Process
Police and the Criminal Process
Public Order Offences
Sexual Assault
Homicide: Murder and Involuntary Manslaughter
Dishonest Acquisition
Drugs Offences
Extending Criminal Liability: Complicity, Conspiracy and Association


Reviews of previous editions:

This is a robust, comprehensive and up to date book about the law of New South Wales. Despite its specific jurisdictional focus anyone with a practical or theoretical interest in how crime is defined, law enforced or trials conducted will find this book to be an invaluable resource. Intended as a law school text, its authors achieve a very rare double of serving well two readerships-academic and practitioner… Whilst constantly challenging a reader’s assumptions in such manner the text never slips into the impenetrable language of postmodern critical theory. It remains a book any practicing lawyer can read with enjoyment… I highly recommend it. – Tasmanian Law Society, Law Letter

A work that any practitioner in the criminal law field can gainfully read, and this is facilitated by the use of Commonwealth and other State legislation and case law. No doubt a number of the propositions can be challenged but overall it is an excellent reference written in a stimulating fashion. – Victorian Bar News

The authors must be congratulated … (they) have undertaken a task which is extraordinarily ambitious in order to provide a much broader insight into the workings and construction of criminal law in our society. – Australian Law Librarians’ Newsletter

This is a most excellent textbook to be recommended for all undergraduate law courses in New South Wales. – NSW Law Society Journal

The issues raised in this massive work are important and enlightening. [It makes a] valuable contribution to the study and practice of criminal law. Its critical (though somewhat unorthodox) style and thought-provoking comment are bound to make it popular. – Victorian Law Institute Journal

For the student of law, Criminal Laws is an exciting and challenging introduction to the subject of criminal law and should stimulate debate in the classroom. For the practitioner, it is an excellent reference book providing an accessible resource of materials often ignored through pressure of time and casework. – Legal Services Bulletin

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