“QUOTEWORTHY” 1991

1. “All of these orders to review go off to the Magistrates in some sort of form. There is a Magistrates’ Courts Reports and somebody edits them and they get distributed to all the Magistrates.”
per Nathan J, in Baldwin v Goodman Fielder & Mills Pty Ltd [1991] VicSC 2, Vic. Sup. Ct., 17 January 1991.

2. “I would not wish to leave this appeal without observing that the uncontradicted evidence leaves the strong impression that the appellant has performed an extremely meritorious public service by the designing and putting into service of these particular armoured vehicles, and the strong impression that they are virtually ‘state of the art’ in the world in the provision of safety for the employees who crew them. But taxing statutes are rarely passed with the intention merely of rewarding the meritorious, and I have indicated earlier what I consider was the legislative intention in creating the relevant exemption.”
per Fullagar J in Mayne Nickless Ltd v Commissioner of Taxation [1991] VicSC 296, Vic Sup Ct (FC), 28 June, 1991.

3. “I suppose most carpets which are fixed to a floor of a building are more or less easily removable. Prima facie, I should have thought carpets in a domestic dwelling are put there for the enjoyment of the dwelling, not for the enjoyment of the carpets as such. According to the test to which Adam J referred – it is, I think, a well-known one – the onus lies upon those who seek to disprove that the carpets fixed in a conventional way to the floor of a suburban dwelling are not fixtures.”
per Tadgell J in Westpac Banking Corp v Rabaiov [1991] VicSC 273, Vic Sup Ct, 17 June 1991.

4. “The question of the amenability of the Crown to the declaratory process being an important constitutional issue, the Solicitor-General urged me to refer the matter to the Full Court for consideration pursuant to s15 of the Supreme Court Act 1958. Although I am acutely aware of my own fallibility and therefore find such a course extremely tempting, I believe I should determine this matter. Firstly because to accede to this request would, effectively deprive the plaintiff of any possibility of remedy; and, secondly, because I believe the legal situation is tolerably clear.”
per Coldrey J, in Shop, Distributive & Allied Employees Assoc v Minister for Consumer Affairs [1991] VicSC 330, Vic Sup Ct, 19 July 1991.

5. “The jury was in retirement for 12 days. It remained in deliberation for such an extensive period at its own request. During that time, through its foreman, it asked a number of questions concerning the application of s186(2) of the Crimes Act 1958 and proof of the requirement for its application. It asked on a number of occasions that the evidence on this aspect of the case be re-read. Many of the foreman’s questions were virtually unintelligible. The judge did his best to interpret and answer them. It is, however, impossible to avoid the conclusion that the entire topic was the subject of confused thought among the jury members which no amount of judicial assistance could correct. The misunderstanding and confusion evident from the transcript of this critical aspect of the case, without more, is sufficient to lead us to the conclusion that the trial was unsatisfactory. This conclusion serves to strengthen the view to which we had already come that the trial was unsatisfactory.”
per Young CJ, Crockett and Southwell JJ in R v Brazda and Anor [1991] VicSC 297, Vic Sup Ct, (FC) 28 June 1991.

6. “The attempt to found a complex representative proceeding on sections 34 and 35 of the Supreme Court Act 1986 resembles an attempt to break a butterfly upon a wheel: the gear is ill-fitted to the task, raising more problems than it can conveniently bear, yet offering greater torment than the subject deserves.”
per Tadgell J in Zentahope Pty Ltd v Bellotti [1992] VicSC 76, Vic Sup Ct, (FC), 2 March 1992.

7. “The Supreme Court of Victoria and its Rules are not like other jurisdictions where it may be the bureaucratic tail wags the judicial dog. That is not so here. The defendant’s instructors knew of their obligation to act with expedition. They proceeded, in my view, legato moderato. They cannot now be heard to complain because the rest of the orchestra was playing vivace and they finished the movement three beats after the conductor put the baton down.”
per Nathan J in Grain Elevators Board v Hinch [1991] VicSC 435, Vic Sup Ct, 30 August 1991.

8. “The expression ‘rash and hazardous gambling’ does not immediately suggest its being one of exactitude. All gambling, we would suppose could with truth be said, should properly be described as hazardous. Indeed, the use of the second adjective is probably pleonastic. When gambling is described as rash, it may mean it is rash having regard to the length of the odds involved. Or it may mean, as we suspect Parliament intended it should mean in the present circumstances, that it is rash because of the difficulty of the gambler in meeting his debts in the event that his wagers are unsuccessful.”
per Crockett J, in R v Macdonald [1991] VicSC 401, Vic Sup Ct (FC), 20 August 1991.