1 Name of Act
This Act is the Crimes Amendment (Bushfires) Act 2002.
This Act commences on a day to be appointed by proclamation.
3 Amendment of Acts
Each Act specified in Schedules 1 and 2 is amended as set out in those Schedules.
Schedule 1 Amendment of Crimes Act 1900 No 40
Part 4, Division 2, Subdivision 5
Insert after Subdivision 4 of Division 2 of Part 4:Subdivision 5 Bushfires203D DefinitionsIn this Subdivision:causing a fire includes:(a) lighting a fire, or(b) maintaining a fire, or(c) failing to contain a fire, except where the fire was lit by another person or the fire is beyond the control of the person who lit the fire.firefighter means a member of a fire brigade under the Rural Fires Act 1997 or the Fire Brigades Act 1989 or of any other official firefighting unit (including a unit from outside the State).spread of a fire means spread of a fire beyond the capacity of the person who causes the fire to extinguish it.203E Offence(1) A person:(a) who intentionally causes a fire, andis guilty of an offence.(b) who is reckless as to the spread of the fire to vegetation on any public land or on land belonging to another,Maximum penalty: Imprisonment for 14 years.(2) For the purposes of this section, recklessness may also be established by proof of intention.(3) A person is not criminally responsible for an offence against this section if:(a) the person is a firefighter or acting under the direction of a firefighter, and(b) the person caused the fire in the course of bushfire fighting or hazard reduction operations.(4) If on the trial of a person for an offence against this section the jury is not satisfied that the accused is guilty of the offence charged but is satisfied on the evidence that the accused is guilty of an offence against section 100 (1) of the Rural Fires Act 1997, it may find the accused not guilty of the offence charged but guilty of the latter offence, and the accused is liable to punishment accordingly.
Schedule 2 Amendment of Criminal Procedure Act 1986 No 209
Schedule 1 Indictable offences triable summarily
Insert after item 9 in Table 1:9A BushfiresAn offence under section 203E of the Crimes Act 1900.