Australia is grappling with increasing efforts to smuggle in huge quantities of the drug methamphetamine from across the region, prompting the police to create global task forces that have resulted in record-breaking seizures.
Fuelled by strong demand and high local prices, Australia has become a popular destination for syndicates from across the region, including China, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia.
"Drugs enter in almost every shape and form," said Professor Ross Coomber, an expert on the drug trade at Griffith University in Brisbane. Policing the nation's vast border and entry points was a huge challenge, he said.
In Australia, the Bourke Street Mall attack also showed the devastation that can be caused when a vehicle is used as a weapon. Yet the events overseas have been clearly labelled as terrorism, whereas the Melbourne incident is considered a “massacre”, “rampage”, and “tragedy”. The accused has been charged with six counts of murder, but not any terror-related offences.
The OCG said the program is endorsed by leading criminologist and researcher Professor Stephen Smallbone of the School of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Griffith University in Queensland. He specialises in situational prevention in reducing sexual abuse of children.
Professor Smallbone, well- known for his expert input at the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse said: “The Royal Commission has reminded us that children can be abused not just in their own homes or social circles, but also in the organisations they spend time in.
At the height a decade or so ago, China probably executed 10,000 or more prisoners a year, the Amnesty report said, citing a Chinese scholar quoted in a news report last year. But the number executed annually is now probably in the “low thousands,” said Susan Trevaskes, a professor at Griffith University in Australia who studies China’s use of the death penalty. “All major death penalty scholars in China say that death penalty decision-making has improved greatly since 2007,” Professor Trevaskes said by email. “I believe that the government has significantly reduced use of the death penalty since the mid-2000s.”
6 April 2017 - Prof Elena Marchetti interviewed over the public submissions into appropriate sentencing for child sex offenders
As more news comes through of terror on the Westminster Bridge in London, Ben spoke to Professor Geoff Dean the Director of International Programs for Policing, Security and Terrorism at Griffith University
A former Northern Territory Corrections Minister says he bears some responsibility for systemic failings in the youth justice system when his government was in office. Labor's Gerry McCarthy faced the Northern Territory youth detention and child protection royal commission today. He was in charge during several incidents involving former Don Dale detainee Dylan Voller, who featured in the Four Corners program which prompted the inquiry.
People subject to incarceration and youth detention in Australia are currently excluded from Medicare and the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS), but the AMA is hoping to see that changed. The AMA, along with the Public Health Association of Australia, Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists, and Professor Stuart A Kinner, NHMRC Senior Research Fellow, Griffith University and University of Melbourne, recently wrote to Health Minister Greg Hunt and identified a mechanism by which this demonstrable inequity can be rectified, at modest cost to the Australian taxpayer.
Ben speaks to Assoc Prof Grant Devilly from Griffith University about his research into drug use in the Valley entertainment precinct.
The work will assess how research is used and its effect on generating innovation. The project received funding of $261,500 from the Australian Research Council and is being undertaken in collaboration with La Trobe University, Southern Cross University and the UK’s University of Bedfordshire. “Research and development is vital in the human services, as it is in all industries. We see that the human services industry is vital to many people’s quality of life but that it lacks innovation and struggles to demonstrate its effectiveness,” says research leader Professor Clare Tilbury from Griffith’s School of Human Services and Social Work.
Researchers from Griffith University and the Netherlands Institute for the Study of Crime and Law Enforcement will identify conditions that promote risk and resilience in children of incarcerated mothers in Australia. “While it is well known that paternal incarceration severely affect children’s psycho-social and behavioural outcomes, heightening risks for chronic offending, there is little research on maternal incarceration,’’ says lead researcher Associate Professor Susan Dennison.
Senior Deputy Vice Chancellor (Research) Professor Ned Pankhurst said the funding would support world-class research at Griffith. “Our success in securing this funding recognises the researchers at Griffith and the impact of their work in tackling the most pressing issues facing humanity in the 21st century,” he said. “As a result of this new funding, a whole range of research projects will get off the ground in areas such as science, engineering, criminology, international politics and sociology.“This remarkable research will advance humankind.”
31 October 2016 - Fullbright Specialist Scholar Professor Emerita Eve Buzawa Visiting GCI
Fullbright Specialist Scholar Professor Emerita Eve Buzawa, from the School of Criminology & Justice Studies at the University of Massachusetts Lowell, is currently visiting the Griffith Criminology Institute. Professor Buzawa will be presenting at a Policing Domestic and Family Violence Forum on Friday 4th November at the Ship Inn Function Centre on: The Evolution of the Police Response to Domestic Violence in the United States: Lessons Learned.
Eve's research interests include policing, domestic violence, and violence against women. She has authored and edited numerous books and monographs including Violence against Women in Families and Relationships: Making and Breaking Connections, a 4 volume set, (Co-Editor with Evan Stark, 2009), Responding to Domestic Violence: The Integration of Criminal Justice Response & Human Services published by Sage Publications (2016) (with Carl Buzawa & Evan Stark). Currently, she is under contract for a book with Springer Publications, Global Responses to Domestic Violence, which will be forthcoming in 2017. She has also served as a Principal Investigator on several US federally funded research projects as well as directing numerous state funded research and training projects. Currently, Professor Buzawa is the recipient of a Fulbright Award and will be at Griffith as part of that program.
12 October 2016 - Future of Gold Coast police rapid response team hangs on outcome of report by Griffith
THE future of the police squad created to clean up outlaw gangs on the Gold Coast rests on a report by criminologists. Experts at Griffith University have been looking at all aspects of the Rapid Action Patrol Group (RAP) — including its success, costs and arrest rate — as its three-year trial comes to an end. The report will determine if RAP will continue on the Gold Coast, expand across Queensland or close down all together.
The review is due to be completed by the end of the year or early next year.
More than 19,000 weapons were surrendered to police during a three-month gun amnesty in Queensland in 2013. But firearms policy researcher Dr Samara McPhedran, of Griffith University, said it was important to be realistic about what amnesties achieved as those who handed in their weapons weren't likely to engage in gun violence. "While it sounds like a cliche it's true to say criminals don't hand in their guns," she said.
Professor Gillian Triggs, President of the Australian Human Rights Commission has called for renewed discussion on greater legislative protection of human rights.
Speaking at the Tony Fitzgerald Lecture at the State Library of Queensland on September 27, Professor Triggs suggested consideration of some form of Bill of Rights for Australia was essential.
Australian history is replete with instances of frontier violence. But the establishment and operation of the Native Police, which was responsible for the brutal killing of thousands of indigenous men, women and children, is a particularly chilling example of this. Some believe they committed genocide. 2016 marks the 150h anniversary of the gazettal of regulations, in Queensland, that imposed a "duty" on armed Native Police officers to “disperse" any "large assembly of blacks without unnecessary violence”. Paul Barclay speaks to a historian, a legal academic and an indigenous activist about this shameful chapter in the nation's past. What can be done to right the wrongs of history
The Four Corners report into the Don Dale youth detention centre and subsequent royal commission have shone a spotlight on the role of youth detention.
Most people agree that some sort of detention system is necessary for young criminals.
But what does effective youth detention actually look like? What works when it comes to dealing with young offenders, and what entrenches intergenerational cycles of criminal behaviour?
"I'm always asking people to say it again. I can't get it the first time. That's my brain, I've only got four fifths of my brain, the rest is gone."
The last time Rudey* went to jail, for three weeks, she didn't speak to anyone outside. She wanted to let people know where she was, to get someone to feed her cat and check on her flat, but the prison's phone system defeated her; she couldn't figure it out and didn't want to draw attention to herself by asking for too much help.
The recent focus on youth justice has highlighted problems in the detention system, but now a Brisbane conference has heard about a program that's helping to reduce re-offending.
A joint Griffith University and Queensland Government-funded service works with the state's worst juvenile sex offenders and their families in their own community.
It has seen reduced rates of both sexual and other violent crimes among program participants.
Dr Samara McPhedran shares surprising new evidence about Australian mass shootings.
3 September 2016 - 'Blatant war and genocide': memories of Native Police haunt Indigenous Queensland
In the premier’s room of the Queensland parliament, under the gaze of a portrait of Joh Bjelke-Petersen, a once unthinkable spectacle took place this week. An audience that included pillars of the establishment – a supreme court judge, a top bureaucrat, government ministers – burst into applause at words that cut to the quick on a passage of history barely known by most Queenslanders, the role of the Native Police in the state’s “settlement”. The words came from Sam Watson, an Indigenous activist who spent his youth fighting to get through parliament’s gates in protest clashes with the ultra-conservative state premier’s police.
The third Future of Policing Symposium was held yesterday at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre, co-hosted by the Queensland Police Service and the Griffith Criminology Institute. Police Minister Bill Byrne MP and Commissioner Ian Stewart were there to welcome the select group of Australian and international academic scholars in the field of policing, as well as a group of law enforcement leaders from Australia and New Zealand.
The focus of this year’s symposium was ‘Policing Diverse Communities’. Topics discussed included policing diverse and emerging communities in an era of new and uncertain risks, learning from experience and evidence relating to domestic/family violence and refugee communities, countering radicalism and violent extremism, and intra-community threats of endemic violence and abuse.
Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has called for a Royal Commission into abuse of youths in the Northern Territory corrections system after the ABC’s Four Corners program aired footage of children being hooded, shackled and teargassed at a Darwin juvenile detention centre.
Cape York Institute senior policy adviser Shireen Morris told Q&A that the incarceration rate of Indigenous people has doubled since the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody 25 years ago. That statement is true but gaps in the data suggest the problem may be even worse than the official statistics suggests.
As the world tries to make sense of the recent trend for horrifying mass murders, Islam is coming in for much of the blame. But what really unites these killers is more complex than following one religion.
What drives someone to plough a truck into families, mow down gay clubbers or shoot innocent people going about their daily business requires a unique combination of characteristics and responses to external forces.
There are different types of mass murders, of course. There are school shooters; gunmen who engage in rampages like Orlando; and serial killers, whose multiple fatal attacks take place over a period of time.
Some are indeed motivated by religious extremism, others by a deep desire for revenge and a few simply by severe mental health disorders.
A heated Q&A panel this week managed to agree on one thing: in the wake of the horrific terrorist attack in Nice, there is a greater need in Australia for early intervention strategies to steer young people away from the path to radicalisation.
Given the serious threat Australia and many other countries face from Islamic-State-inspired terrorism, it is difficult to disagree with the idea that prevention is better than cure. When a 15-year-old radicalised boy can shoot an innocent man in broad daylight on a city street, something clearly needs to be done to ensure vulnerable youth do not become radicalised and commit acts of terrorism.
15 July 2016 - Griffith Criminology Institute's International and Industry Advisory Board Member to receive Honorary Doctorate
Judge Kingham will receive her honorary doctorate in recognition of her distinguished service to the legal profession, Griffith University, and the wider community. Judge Kingham helped transform the Queensland legal system through the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal and was responsible for amalgamating the jurisdictions of 23 bodies into a single one-stop shop, allowing people easier access to legal services. She was co-founder of the Women’s Legal Service in Brisbane and was awarded the Agnes McWhinney Award by the Queensland Law Society in recognition of her significant contribution to making justice more accessible to the community, and bridging the gap between land and resources issues and Indigenous communities.
Are people with mental illness more likely to be violent or victims of violence? How do connections between mental illness and violent affect others in the community? These are just some of the questions to be explored at Griffith University’s Challenging the Mental Illness/Violence Nexus Conference in Brisbane on July 13 and 14. Convenor Professor Paul Mazerolle from Griffith’s Violence Research and Prevention Program said the conference would focus on ways to help some of society’s most vulnerable people as well as discussing the broader consequences of mental illness.