Prison decisions

Hamzy v Commissioner [2020] NSWSC 414

A number of restrictions were placed on prisoner Hamzy – monitoring phone calls, security-checking his lawyers and denying audio-visual access.  He said his right to legal representation had been infringed, and that security-checking was unreasonable. 

Bellew J disagreed saying (at [73-77]) that prison rules can be applied to take account of particular circumstances.  Authorities must have broad power to administer prisons and should be given ‘full scope’ to carry out their tasks ‘without undue influence from the courts’.  Judges should also avoid ‘becoming enmeshed’ in the merits of prison management decisions which are often complex9.

This principle is from Episode 61 of interpretation NOW!


9 Fyfe [2000] SASC 84 (at [18]), Bernard-Ross [2018] NSWSC 182 (at [41]).