The Tony Liristis Case

Tony Liristis

Mr Liristis sought orders that his solicitors supply him with a laptop while in custody in order to prepare to defend himself against current matters before the District Court. However, concerns surrounding prisoners having access to the Internet or charging their mobile phones have prevented him from having access to this technology. Peter Severin, the commissioner of the Corrective Services NSW (CSNSW) refused Mr Liristis’ request due to “security concerns.”

He was representing himself in the matter, which had to be rescheduled twice due to the inadequacy of resources. Whilst the fears about computers in cells is plausible, it restricts prisoners’ ability to have a fair trial and in turn does not comply with the explicit terms of the ICCPR.[1] 

In light of the violated rights, a court proceeding granted Mr Liristis access to a printer and computer in custody in order to prepare for his appeal.[2]

[1] International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (n 1).

[2] Australian Law Reform Commission, Traditional Rights and Freedoms (Report No 129, March 2016) 219-57.

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