‘No body, no parole’ laws proposed by WA Opposition http://ab.co/1mA4Naz – via @abcnews
‘No body, no parole’ laws proposed by WA Opposition
18:28 AEDT SUN 14 FEB 2016
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Ray and Margaret Dodd (left) hand over a petition calling for ‘no body, no parole’ laws to Labor MPs David Templeman, Mark McGowan and John Quigley.
BY JACOB KAGI
Killers who refuse to help police find the remains of their victims could be denied parole under legislation set to be introduced to State Parliament by the West Australian Opposition.
The move comes on the back of a campaign by the parents of WA teenager Hayley Dodd, who disappeared nearly two decades ago, calling for ‘no body, no parole’ laws to be introduced.
An online petition started by Margaret and Ray Dodd calling for such laws to be introduced has since gained nearly 20,000 supporters.
If the proposed laws were enacted, it would mean a convicted murderer would not be eligible for parole unless the Prisoner Review Board was satisfied the person had co-operated with police to locate victims’ remains.
Labor will give notice of its plans to introduce the legislation in State Parliament this week, but will need the support of the Government for it to proceed.
Shadow Attorney-General John Quigley said the change would offer an extremely strong incentive for murderers to assist authorities to recover victims’ bodies.
“If you are convicted of murder and you have not revealed the whereabouts of the victim, you will be cemented into that prison forever,” Mr Quigley said.
“We are sick of people suffering interminably … the community is revolted by the fact.”
A similar measure is already in place in South Australia after being introduced last year, and there are calls for its introduction in Queensland.
‘This is important to a lot of people’
Margaret Dodd said her petition showed there was an overwhelming appetite for change.
Missing WA teenager Hayley Dodd
Her daughter Hayley went missing in 1999 while travelling between Moora and Badgingarra in WA’s Wheatbelt, and is thought to have been abducted and murdered.
“We have almost 20,000 signatures and it just shows this is important to a lot of people, not just to victims but to the general public out there,” Ms Dodd said.
“The law needs changing.”
However the Attorney-General Michael Mischin dismissed the plan as a “beat up”, saying there was nothing to suggest it was needed.
“As long as I am Attorney-General, I would not be recommending to the Governor any release on parole for a murderer who has not revealed the location of the victim’s body,” he said.
“[Labor] talks about many cases — I challenge them to name one since we came into government where it has happened. It is simply a non-issue.
“It seems to be me to be a beat up based on a lady’s grief, but I can assure you the current law accommodates what they are proposing.”