Date of this Version


Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Details

Pre-print version.

Chappell, D. and Lincoln R. (2007). Abandoning identity protection for juvenile offenders. Current Issues in Criminal Justice, 18(3), 481-487.

For further information please visit Current Issues in Criminal Justice.

2007 HERDC submission.

Copyright © Duncan Chappell and Robyn Lincoln, 2007.



In what is believed to be a case without precedent in Australia the media organisation, John Fairfax Pty Ltd, publishers of the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age newspapers, recently made application in the NSW Court of Criminal Appeal (NSWCCA) to have a name suppression order removed on two juveniles and their cooffending adult siblings.2 The prohibition on publishing their names meant that they could only be known by pseudonyms, namely their initials, on the premise that the naming of the adult brothers would automatically identify the younger ones. In a unanimous decision the NSWCCA (Spigelman CJ, Basten JA and Hislop J) rejected the application on jurisdictional grounds. The decision rested on the fact that current NSW legislation generally empowers a court to grant publication of identity only at the time of sentencing by the sentencing court (NSWCCA 2006).