‘Innocent until proven guilty’ an eroded concept
A Senate committee found that the common law presumption that a person is innocent until proven guilty was being eroded by stealth in Commonwealth and State laws. Using a computer, the committee found more than 300 provisions in Commonwealth legislation which placed a “persuasive” burden of proof on defendants instead of the prosecution, with evidence suggesting such provisions were as prevalent, and more, in State and territory laws.
In Alaska, the Anchorage city council voted unanimously for vehicles of drunken drivers to be confiscated, an ordinance the mayor said was the first of its kind in the US. A person convicted twice within five years could lose their car for at least 30 days. Meanwhile, in the English town of Bude a magistrate refused a late-night drinks licence planned by the End of the World Society by ruling: “The end of the world is not a special occasion.”
Local-content rule on radio may go
The Australian Broadcasting Tribunal was set to do away with a rule that forced commercial radio stations to play a minimum of 20 per cent Australian-performed music. The tribunal called for public comment on its proposal to drop-Standard Three of its Radio Program Standards, which set the quota. The standard had first been set in 1973 at 10 per cent. Strong opposition was expected from Actors’ Equity and the Musicians’ Union.