Source: (2006) Justice Connections: a joint publication of NAFCM, PRASI and VOMA. 3(Winter 06-07):1, 15-16.

Informal sentencing procedures in remote Indigenous communities of Australia have been occurring for some time, but it was in the late 1990s that formalization of the practice began in urban areas with the advent of Indigenous sentencing and circle courts. These circle courts emerged primarily to address the over-representation and incarceration of Indigenous people in the criminal justice system. The first Indigenous urban court was assembled in Port Adelaide, South Australia in June 1999 and was named the Nunga Court. Courts emerging since in other states are based on the Nunga Court model, although they have been adapted to suit local conditions. The practice of circle sentencing was introduced in New South Wales (NSW) in Nowra in February 2002. (excerpt)


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