The Australian Military Justice System

History, Organisation and Disciplinary Structure

  • David Denton QC Victorian Bar


To understand the Australian military and its justice system requires a knowledge of its development since 1788. The essence of this article is to briefly examine the historical development of the legal basis of each stage of Australian naval and military discipline, from colonial times until the current period. As will be seen the ‘chain of command’ is considered crucial to the military justice system as an incidence of the management and functioning of the military. Specifically, this article addresses the following points: the historical development of military justice, the structure of the Australian Defence Force, the chain of command; and the constitutional exceptionalism of military justice.

How to Cite
Denton D. (2016) “The Australian Military Justice System: History, Organisation and Disciplinary Structure”, Victoria University Law and Justice Journal. Melbourne, Australia, 6(1), pp. 27–36. doi: 10.15209/vulj.v6i1.1059.