In the 2015 case of M, L v Police SASCFC 126 the Supreme Court of South Australia discussed a situation where restorative justice was considered the ‘most appropriate sentencing option’. The appellant was charged with ten counts of sexual offending, with each count involving the complainant, a younger female cousin of the appellant. The ten counts related to seven separate alleged incidents occurring between 2000 and 2004. At the time, the appellant was aged between 11 and 15 years, and the complainant was aged between 7 and 11 years. However, the appellant was acquitted of 9 of the 10 charges. The sentencing judge considered that although the ‘serious nature of the offending’ suggested a family conference would be inappropriate, ‘in all of the circumstances, a restorative justice conference was the most appropriate sentencing option’ (para. 7).

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