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<br>Director of Public Prosecutions [DPP] v Currie, Hayden Thomas; Director of Public Prosecutions [DPP] v Daniels, Jared (a pseudonym) [2021] VSCA 272

STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION, CRIMINAL LAW
Victorian Court of Appeal
Judge(s): 
Beach, McLeish and Walker JJA
Parties: 

Director of Public Prosecutions [DPP] v Currie, Hayden Thomas; Director of Public Prosecutions [DPP] v Daniels, Jared (a pseudonym)

Judgment Date: 
30 September 2021
Catchwords: 

STATUTORY CONSTRUCTION - Crown sentence appeals - Director authorised associate to affix Director's electronic signature to notices of appeal on her behalf - Whether notices invalid, depriving Court of jurisdiction - Whether notices of appeal 'signed by' Director 'personally' within meaning of Criminal Procedure Act 2009 s 288(2) - Common ground that affixing electronic signature constitutes signing - Whether necessary for Director to affix own electronic signature to 'personally' sign - Language of provision capable of bearing two meanings - Whether properly construed as requiring that Director affix signature personally or that notice bear her personal signature - Context agnostic - Construing as requiring that notice bear Director's personal signature achieves statutory purpose of ensuring Director personally considers prescribed matters before commencing appeal - Requirement prevents delegation of signing or authorising signing by proxy - Alternative construction achieves no additional statutory purpose but productive of uncertainty and administrative inconvenience - Notices valid - Whether Director failed to adequately consider prescribed matters before commencing appeal - Director's decision under Criminal Procedure Act 2009 s 287 to commence appeal not reviewable by Court - Maxwell v The Queen (1996) 184 CLR 501, Alcan (NT) Alumina Pty Ltd v Commissioner of Territory Revenue (NT) (2009) 239 CLR 27, applied - Goodman v J Eban Ltd [1954] 1 QB 550, R v Justice of Kent (1873) LR 8 QB 305, considered - Criminal Procedure Act 2009 ss 287, 288 - Public Prosecutions Act 1994 s 30 - Electronic Transactions (Victoria) Act 2000 s 9.

CRIMINAL LAW - Appeal - Sentence - Crown appeal - One charge of rape - Opportunistic offending against intoxicated colleague, after initially providing assistance - Complainant invited some intimate contact despite inability to consent - Prior good character - Excellent prospects of rehabilitation - Guilty plea and profound remorse - Whether sentence of 3 years' imprisonment and non-parole period of 14 months manifestly inadequate - Head sentence merciful but not outside available range - Non-parole period manifestly inadequate - Residual discretion to decline to interfere exercised - Unusual case where hardship and damage to third parties caused by extending non-parole period shortly to expire by months.

CRIMINAL LAW - Appeal - Sentence - Crown appeal - Two charges of culpable driving causing death, one charge of negligently causing serious injury, two charges of conduct endangering life and associated summary offences - Youthful respondent drove vehicle at almost 100 kph greater than speed limit in residential area - Driver of another vehicle and passenger in respondent's vehicle killed in collision at intersection - Second passenger in respondent's vehicle rendered paraplegic - Whether open to find driver of other vehicle failed to give way at intersection - Whether judge erred in reducing sentence because of failure to give way - Modest reduction - Failure to give way additional causal factor - No error shown - Spanjol v The Queen (2016) 55 VR 350, applied - Whether individual sentences, cumulation, total effective sentence of 11 years and 6 months or non-parole period of 6 years manifestly inadequate - Individual and total effective sentences in range given mitigating factors - Director of Public Prosecutions v Reid [2020] VSCA 247, Victorsen v The Queen [2020] VSCA 248, considered - Non-parole period manifestly inadequate.

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