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Soerensen v The Queen [2020] WASCA 114

appeal against sentence — eight counts of aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring the commission of an offence of importing into Australia porcine semen knowing that thing was an animal, plant or other good offence contrary to s 67(3) of the Quarantine Act 1908 (Cth), obtained or was likely to have obtained a commercial advantage over their competitors or potential competitors offence contrary to s 67(3) of the Quarantine Act 1908 (Cth) and s 11.2(1) of the Commonwealth Criminal Code — original sentence imposed 3 years’ immediate imprisonment, with offender to be released after serving 18 months upon entering into a recognisance of $5,000 to be of good behaviour for a period of 18 months — manifest excess totality — practical effect of totality principle is ordinarily to arrive at a total effective sentence which is less than that which would have been arrived at merely by adding up all of the terms appropriate for the individual offences — pre-release period of 18 months was unreasonable or plainly unjust — interests of justice (including appropriate punishment and personal and general deterrence) in all circumstances (including overall offending, favourable personal circumstances and antecedents, pleads of guilty and other mitigating factors) did not require offender serve pre-release period of 18 months — pre-release period fixed by sentencing judge was in excess of pre-release period that was reasonably required in order to reflect and give effect to all relevant sentencing factors — course of conduct — s 16A(2)(c) — offender’s criminality was not isolated or opportunistic, it involved planning and premeditation — victim of the offence — ‘victims’ of the offending were potentially members of Australian community who may have been affected adversely if Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome had been introduced into Australia — contrition — s 16A(2)(f)(i) — offender prepared personal statement and sentencing judge found statement showed degree of genuine remorse and insight into potential harm to Australian industry — guilty plea — s 16A(2)(g) — plead guilty to all charged offences at early opportunity and after disclosure — sentencing judge found this amounted to acceptance responsibility and willingness to allow justice to take its course — although Crown case against offender was strong, pleas saved time and resources — general deterrence — s 16A(2)(ja) — adequacy of punishment — s 16A(2)(k) — essential to ensure offender adequately punished for offences having regard to objective seriousness of their offending (including role within criminal enterprise) and important sentencing factor of general deterrence with a view to ensuring proper compliance with Australia’s biosecurity laws — rehabilitation — s 16A(2)(n) — appears offender has excellent prospects of rehabilitation and they are most unlikely to reoffend — offender’s family and dependants — s 16A(2)(p) — probably that sentence imposed will have adverse effect on offender’s family as unable to support wife or children financially or emotionally — appears children will be appropriately cared for financially and emotionally by wife — re-sentence — offender released after serving 12 months upon entering into recognisance of $5,000 to be of good behaviour for 24 months
The CSD acknowledges Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples as First Australians and recognises their culture, history, diversity and their deep connection to the land. We acknowledge that we are on the land of the traditional owners and pay respects to Elders past and present.

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