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ROYAL COMMISSIONS ACT 1902 - SECT 6AB

Offences relating to claims for legal professional privilege

             (1)  A person commits an offence if:

                     (a)  the person had refused or failed to produce a document as required by a member of a Commission under section 2; and

                     (b)  the member of the Commission has decided under subsection 6AA(2) to reject a claim that the document (or the relevant part of the document) is subject to legal professional privilege; and

                     (c)  the person refuses or fails to produce the document as the member of the Commission requires, after that decision, under section 2.

Penalty:  Imprisonment for 2 years.

             (2)  A person commits an offence if the person refuses or fails to produce a document that the person was required under subsection 6AA(3) to produce for inspection.

Penalty:  Imprisonment for 2 years.

             (4)  Subsections (1) and (2) do not apply if the person has a reasonable excuse.

             (5)  It is not a reasonable excuse for the purposes of subsection (4) for a person to refuse or fail to produce a document that the document is subject to legal professional privilege, unless a court has found the document to be subject to legal professional privilege.

             (6)  It is a defence to a prosecution for an offence against this section constituted by a refusal or failure to produce a document if the document was not relevant to the matters into which the Commission was inquiring.

Note:          A defendant bears an evidential burden in relation to the matters in subsections (4) and (6) (see subsection 13.3(3) of the Criminal Code ).

             (7)  The reference in subsection (6) to the matters into which the Commission was inquiring is, for a Commission that holds an authorised member hearing, a reference to the matters into which the Commission as a whole was inquiring.



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