Some Historical Facts about Parramatta
Parramatta City acknowledges the Darug People.
The Darug people are acknowledged as the traditional Owners of this land.
A clan of the Darug people, known as the Burramattagal people occupied present day Parramatta for over 60,000 years. It is reported that they settled along the Parramatta River.
‘Burramattagal’ is believed to mean ‘place where the eels lie down’ to breed. With a close connection to the land, these people would catch fish and eels from the Parramatta River.
It wasn’t until 1788 when Governor Phillip arrived with the 1st fleet of English convicts that Parramatta was then developed into a settlement of farming to feed the new colony. As a consequence, the land that was inhabited for many thousands of years was effectively taken over by the new English colony.
While the warrior groups known as Pemulwuy put up a resistance against the new colonisation, they failed.
Interestingly, the Darug people can still be found in the Blue Mountains, La Perouse, and Parramatta.
Parramatta is now a suburb located in Sydney, NSW.
It was discovered by the British in 1788, being the same year that Sydney was founded in. It is situated about twenty-three kilometres from the Sydney CBD.
Parramatta is considered not only the economic capital of the greater Western Sydney, but it’s also the 6th biggest central business district in the nation, as well as the 2nd Central CBD of Sydney.
Parramatta also has a world heritage site, the Old Government House established in 1799, which is the nation’s oldest public structure that still survives today.
Amongst other amazing things about Parramatta, it also has the 9th largest shopping centre in the nation, namely, Westfield Parramatta.
Major upgrades have taken place in Parramatta encompassing plans for a light rail. With the increase in population, a light rail will help facilitate Parramatta’s growth even further.
The Parramatta Justice Precinct
The Parramatta Justice Precinct is situated within the western portion of Parramatta CBD. It provides judicial, administrative, community service health and welfare related needs to the community.
It is located within 50 metres from the CDLA law firm Parramatta office.
The Garfield Barwick Commonwealth Law Courts Building
Across the road from the Justice Precinct is the Garfield Barwick Commonwealth Law Courts Building, which is named after Sir Garfield Barwick. It sits as the Federal Magistrates Court of Australia and Family Court of Australia.
This court deals with family law matters, including divorce applications, parenting disputes and the division of money upon separation of couples. It covers family law matters in all Australian States and Territories except for Western Australia.
The Parramatta Children’s Court
Located in the Justice Precinct is the Children’s Court of NSW situated on 2 George Street, Parramatta. The same building is used to hear weekend bail applications for those who are charged and refused bail by police on Friday and Saturday after hours.
The Children’s Court of New South Wales is established under the Children’s Court Act 1987 (NSW) which hears most criminal cases involving children who are charged with criminal offences aged between 10 and less than 18 years.
The Children’s Court was initiated in January 1988 and was initially set up to address the widespread poverty and child neglect, assuming the role of a parent, punisher and protector. The same court now also exercises care jurisdiction under the Children and Young Persons (Care and Protection) Act 1998.
The Parramatta Drug Court
Further, the Justice Precinct also houses the Parramatta Drug Court of NSW as a court that specialises in dealing with people facing criminal offences who also have drug addictions. This court has the same powers as the District and Local Courts of NSW and only sits in the state of NSW.
The Drug Court started in February 1999 in order to effectively reduce crimes committed by offenders who suffer from drug addictions. This court acknowledges that such a vulnerability to drugs require a specialised approach to imposing a sentence rather than the normal approach in order to reduce recidivism and crime. This court focuses of rehabilitation and encouragement to comply with such programs.
The types of treatments offered include residential and community-based rehabilitation programs. It also includes regular drug testing, regularly reporting back to the court on your progress, social support and living skills programs in addition to evidence-based treatment of drug use.
Once the person is detoxified and after an assessment process as to eligibility, he/she will then appear before the Drug Court where a plea of guilty will be entered. Upon pleading guilty to the criminal charge, the court will then impose a sentence other than full-time imprisonment on the condition he/she also agree to adhere to the program conditions. Those conditions will require the participant to go through all 3 phases of the program.
The drug court has proven to be effective in NSW.
The Sydney West Trial Courts- Parramatta District Court
Within the Parramatta Justice Precinct is also the Sydney West Trial Courts.
The Sydney West Trial Courts comprises of the sitting Parramatta NSW Supreme Court and Parramatta District Court. It’s located on 6 George Street, Parramatta- only a short walk away from the CDLA Parramatta office, which is located on level 1, Suite 1, 154 Marsden St, Parramatta.
The complex which houses the Sydney West trial Courts was built and designed by a company called Brookfeld Multiplex. The project was valued at $300 million.
The Parramatta District Court, located within the Sydney West Trial Courts hears serious criminal cases involving jury trials, such as commercial and large commercial drug supply charges, drug importation charges, serious assaults, complex fraud charges, serious sexual assault charges, child sex charges and serious break and enter charges.
The Parramatta Local Court House
The Parramatta Local Court house is located on 12 George Street, Parramatta. It’s situated directly across the road from the Sydney West Trial Courts building complex, and only a short walk away from our Parramatta CDLA office.
The Parramatta court house was initially opened in 1791 by Governor Arthur Phillip. Since then it has been rebuilt on 4 occasions.
The Parramatta local court deals with criminal and civil cases where an adult person is accused of a crime. This court has the jurisdiction to initially deal with all ‘summary’ and ‘indictable’ offences.
Summary offences are less serious or more trivial offences. The Parramatta local court can deal with and dispose of such offences to finality by way of a sentence or hearing. Summary offences includes drug possession and drink driving charges.
Indictable offences are more serious criminal cases than summary offences. Indictable offences can either be dealt with in the Local Court or elected to be dealt with in the District Court to finality. The Parramatta Local Court also hears indictable offences such as drug supply, sexual touching and assault cases.
Further to this, Parramatta Local Court also deals with more serious indictable offences referred to as ‘strictly indictable’ offences to a limited extent.
Strictly indictable offences, such as commercial drug supply, drug importation, and sexual assault cases, are first processed in the Local Court before they are referred to the District Court to be dealt with to finality.
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