Articles by Sonia Hickey

Tinder Rapist Granted Bail


In the Melbourne County Court last week, Glenn Antony Hartland pleaded guilty to raping three women and indecently assaulting a fourth. His pleas of guilty were followed by an application for bail, which was granted by the court on strict conditions. This means Mr Hartland will be in the community until his sentencing hearing in ...

Only Half of the Serious Injuries on Our Roads are Recorded


According to the NSW Centre for Road Safety, only half of the serious injuries caused by road collisions are recorded road trauma statistics, because police and hospital records cannot be matched. The Centres reports that there were 11,557 people seriously injured on NSW roads in the 12 months to March 2018, but because 5702 of ...

Family Court Needs Urgent Overhaul, says new Chief Justice


The newly appointed head of the Family Court of Australia and Federal Circuit Court says urgent reform is needed if the courts are to serve those who need them most. Incoming Chief Justice Will Alstergren, who will take up the helm in December, says the entire system needs a major shake-up in order to make ...

New Senior Counsel Appointed in New South Wales


Nineteen barristers, comprising 15 men and four women, have been elevated to the prestigious rank of Senior Counsel (SC), or ‘silk’, this year. The NSW Bar Association has released its annual list of senior counsel appointments. Prestigious title The title Senior Counsel is highly prized, much coveted and considered a mark of respect for barristers ...

Should ‘Dowry Abuse’ be Criminalised?


A Senate Inquiry into ‘dowry abuse’ has heard that a disturbing number of women in Australia are being subjected to mental and physical abuse by their fiances or husbands with a view to having them elicit gifts from their families to support marriages. What is dowry abuse? A dowry is a long-held tradition amongst Hindu ...

Sexual Harassment Rife in Australian Workplaces


New research by the Human Rights Commission suggests that sexual harassment is on the rise in Australian workplaces. The study, the fourth of its kind since 2012, found that one in three people reported being sexually harassed in the workplace, up from 21 per cent in 2012. It also found that 71 percent reported being ...

A Walk Through History: Bidura Children’s Court’s ‘Dungeon’


Some of Australia’s most infamous criminals had their initiation into custody at Bidura Children’s Court and Remand Centre. The Bidura Children’s Court first opened in 1911 and is currently undergoing a multi-million dollar renovation. The excavations have uncovered a number of dark secrets about Australia’s criminal past. The building itself is large and intimidating. Made ...

Taxpayers Foot the Bill for Public Service Scammers


Employees of the Department of Home Affairs, which is overseen by Minister Peter Dutton, are reported to have been caught claiming fraudulent sick leave – with one particular employee submitting 29 fraudulent medical certificates over a 6-year period. The figures, obtained under freedom of information laws, are the result of an internal investigation within department ...

Family Court ‘Expert’ Under Investigation


There are calls for change in the Australian family law system after an approved ‘expert’ was referred for investigation over allegations he prepared “grossly inaccurate” reports to be presented in evidence to support claims of child abuse and family violence. A group of parents has accused the expert of “grossly inaccurate and incomplete” recording of ...

Hiding Amongst Us – Australia’s 10 Most Wanted Fugitives


Australian Federal Police are seeking the public’s help to find ten of Australia’s most wanted fugitives in the land, who are said to be hiding amongst local communities. Crime Stoppers warns these dangerous people could be your neighbours, work colleagues or faces you see regularly at the local shops and pubs, as it is ‘quite ...