Chamberlain defence lawyer winner of Law Society President’s Medal

26 October 2012

President of the Law Society of NSW, Justin Dowd, has congratulated prominent NSW Central Coast defence lawyer, Stuart Tipple, who is the recipient of the 2012 President's Medal.


The Law Society of NSW President's Medal is awarded annually in recognition of significant personal and professional contributions made to the betterment of law and justice by a NSW solicitor, who is also a member of the Law Society of NSW.


Mr Dowd presented the medal to Mr Tipple at the Law Society's Annual Members' Dinner last night.


"Stuart has made a significant contribution not only to the local community, but also to the legal profession and the administration of justice in Australia and indeed the world," Mr Dowd said.


"His work and dedication has helped to ensure best practice in the NSW criminal justice system by identifying deficiencies and bringing about change in forensic testing and procedures.


"Stuart is also an active member his local community which he has contributed to through his work with the Central Coast Adventists School Board and the Sydney Adventist Hospital," he said.


Stuart Tipple, who has practised law in NSW since 1978, was one of the longest serving members of the Chamberlain's defence team during the inquiries into the death of their daughter Azaria Chamberlain.


Whilst representing the Chamberlain Family, Mr Tipple alerted authorities to inadequacies in forensic testing in criminal cases that prevented independent assessment and failed to comply with best practice. As a consequence, forensic testing practice and procedures in NSW have been changed and improved.


In response to submissions by Mr Tipple, the Northern Territory Government also moved to amend its criminal code to allow its Criminal Court of Appeal to consider fresh evidence and quash convictions enabling wrongly convicted persons to gain acquittal rather than a pardon.


Over more than 30 years, Mr Tipple has also provided pro bono services to legatee widows and their families and the Salvation Army, as well as serving on various advisory committees and boards.


Media Contact: Jacob O'Shaughnessy 02 9926 0288 or 0413 440 699


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