Older people

The cases identified here provide examples of the way judicial officers have dealt with some of the issues raised in the context statement.

Click on the citation to be directed to a summary of the case in the Case Database.

  • Kiril (A Pseudonym) v The Queen [2019] VSCA 133 (14 June 2019) – Victorian Court of Appeal

    [48] The victim of the applicant’s offending was elderly and frail and – at least at some point once she had returned from the nursing home to live with him – incapable of adequately caring for herself. Her pitiable condition at the time of death – weighing a mere 34 kilograms and covered in sores – is distressing, and the source of a deal of pathos. She was in that condition because of the applicant’s callous disregard for her welfare, suffering her to live in squalor without any semblance of proper care. The respondent’s description of the applicant’s treatment of his mother as cruel, heatless and inhumane is entirely apt. It was, I consider, very serious and protracted offending.

    [53] By his plea, the applicant admitted that, by his conduct, he recklessly endangered his 83 year old mother’s life. That means that the applicant admitted he foresaw that his conduct placed her at an appreciable risk of death, and yet he continued to neglect her. For my part, I consider that conduct to be truly reprehensible.

  • R v Eimerl [2015] ACTSC 72 (12 March 2015) – Australian Capital Territory Supreme Court
    The 23 year old offender forcibly confined his mother, verbally abused her and damaged property. Burns J at [17]: ‘I take into account that this is a family violence matter. That is relevant because the only reason that you were able to commit this offence was because of the relationship of trust that existed between you and the victim. If you had not been a family member who was loved and trusted by your victim you would not have had the opportunity to commit this offence. I also note that the offence occurred in the victim's own home, where she should have been entitled to feel safe’.
  • Saddler v Pavicic [2011] ACTSC 199 (9 December 2011) – Australian Capital Territory Supreme Court
    Burns J at [12]: ‘It is clear that this was a domestic violence offence. The complainant in the matter was the respondent’s mother. Documents from the Canberra Hospital which were tendered in the proceedings before the learned Magistrate suggest that she was born on 21 June 1949, meaning that she was 60 years old at the time of this offence. The respondent was apparently 31 years old. It is now well settled that offences of domestic violence must be treated seriously, and frequently display aggravating features not present in offences occurring outside a domestic relationship. The only reason the respondent was in a position to commit the offence on his mother was because of that relationship. As such, the offence involved a serious breach of the trust reposed in the respondent as a son by his mother. Additionally, the age of the complainant was an aggravating circumstance attending the commission of the offence’.