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3-111 (Original)

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author,male,Therry, J.,un addressee,male
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Government English
Imperial Correspondence
Bennett, 1979
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3-111.txt — 2 KB

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1. In my opinion, the Assistant Barrister's Act of Ireland, the County Courts Act of England, and the Court of Requests Act of this colony, furnish materials for legislation, out of which a "District Court" Act for this colony may be advantageously constructed. [110]
2. The jurisdiction in the District Court to the extent of £10 in civil cases might he exercised by the judge of the court alone. Beyond that sum, and to the extent of £100, the judge should be assisted by two assessors, being magistrates of the district in which the court sits. Above £50 an appeal should lie to the Supreme Court.
3. For the present, Moreton Bay should not be interfered with; as in the event of the Constitutional Act being approved of, by the appointment of a fourth judge, the judicial requirements of that district will be provided for. For the present, three District Courts, (Sydney and the County of Cumberland forming one district), for Maitland, Goulburn, and Bathurst, will suffice. The Maitland District should extent to Armidale, and an intermediate court might be held at Jerry's Plains. Goulburn District should embrace Berrima and Yass: Bathurst. Wellington and the Lachlan district.
4. In criminal matters, these courts should exercise a jurisdiction in all cases not capital. Cases of criminal information, and perhaps cases of perjury, should be excepted also.
5. If a person of legal education could be found in the district of Albury, it would be very desirable, from its great distance, and the inconvenience and expense of removing prisoners to the circuit and other courts of the colony, that a District Judge should be also appointed for Albury. Or it might be arranged, that the Judge of the District Court of Goulburn should visit Albury in his judicial capacity twice a year.
6. The present Commissioner and Chairman, whose time is now occupied, for the most part, in travelling to distant districts, might discharge the duties of District Judge for Sydney and the County of Cumberland, and also perform the duties of Chief Commissioner of the Insolvent Court.
7. To these courts there should be attached an associate, who should perform the duties of Prothonotary, Master in Equity, Chief Commissioner of Insolvent Estates, Clerk of Arraigns; and also of prosecuting counsel on the trial of criminals.
8. I concur in the suggestion of Mr. Justice Dickinson, that the offices of Crown Prosecutor and Commissioner of the Court of Requests should be abolished; and the present officers receive a judgeship as an equivalent appointment. I also concur in the opinion, that "recorder" would be an appropriate title for the district judge.