Justice Home > Media & news > Ministerial Media releases

Learn how our essential services will continue to operate as we respond 'Together against COVID-19'.

​Review of domestic violence and other homicide sentencing

Published date: Friday, 23 November 2018

The NSW Government has ordered an independent review of sentencing for murder and manslaughter offences, including those involving domestic and family violence.

Attorney General Mark Speakman and Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Pru Goward said the Sentencing Council review follows community concerns about the sentencing of domestic violence killers.

Mr Speakman said the tragedy of domestic violence homicide claimed 28 lives in NSW in 2017–18, representing 44 per cent of all homicide victims in that period.

“The Sentencing Council will examine how sentencing decisions affect families of homicide victims and the devastating impact of domestic violence on the community,” Mr Speakman said.

“This review will consider the laws relating to life sentences for murder and whether the 20-year standard non-parole period for murder should be increased. Standard non-parole periods provide an important legislative guidepost for judges.”

Ms Goward said while the review will examine sentencing principles for all types of manslaughter and murder, it is particularly important that the Sentencing Council consider closely how domestic violence killers are held to account.

“The results of the review will provide the NSW Government with guidance on potential law reform,” Ms Goward said.

“We want to make sure the courts have all the powers they need to impose appropriate sentences on killers — including domestic violence offenders - and can lock up the worst for life,” Ms Goward said.

Reducing domestic violence reoffending by 25 per cent by 2021 is one of the Premier’s Priorities.