Meaning of ‘remains’

Armitage v Parole Board Qld [2023] QCA 239

In Queensland, a ‘no body – no parole’ rule applies where ‘part of the body or remains of the victim has not been located’8.  Armitage was convicted of manslaughter, but 15% of the body was unaccounted for (hands and feet).  Did the rule apply in this case?

Flanagan JA (at [27]) emphasised the importance of purpose9 and that context may support non-ordinary meanings10.  There was evidence that the missing parts had been destroyed by fire or predation.  The word ‘remains’ within the rule, it was held, must refer to what actually remains of the body and is capable of being located.  The rule did not apply to missing body parts which no longer existed.  Appeal allowed.

This principle is from Episode 104 of interpretation NOW!


8 s 175C of the Corrective Services Act 2006 (Qld).

9 s 14A of the Acts Interpretation Act 1954 (Qld), similar to federal s 15AA.

10 A2 [2019] HCA 35 [32-37], SAS Trustee [2018] HCA 55 [20, 64] cited.