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About custody orders

Section 24 of the Criminal Law (Mentally Impaired Accused) Act 1996 (WA) (the Act), requires an accused to be detained in an authorised hospital, a declared place, a detention centre or a prison. However, a mentally impaired accused cannot be detained in an authorised hospital unless the accused has a mental illness that is capable of being treated. Consequently, accused who suffer solely from a cognitive impairment are not suitable for a hospital placement.

Depending on the status of the mental illness, some accused persons may not require treatment and cannot be detained in a hospital. For these accused, the effective custodial option is prison or a declared place. The Declared Places (Mentally Impaired Accused) Act 2015 (WA) paved the way for the first declared place, known as the Disability Justice Centre.

More information about custody orders and the Mentally Impaired Accused can be found on the Mentally Impaired Accused Review Board web site.