Thomas Spohr

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Thomas Spohr
EducationBachelor of Law (Honours), Bachelor of Arts
Alma mater University of Wollongong
EmployerNSW Legal Aid
OrganizationLaw Society of New South Wales
Home townSydney
Board member ofTristan Jepson Memorial Foundation, Law Society of New South Wales

Thomas Spohr is an Australian solicitor with NSW Legal Aid and former prosecutor. He was an appointed councillor of the Law Society of New South Wales (representing NSW Young Lawyers), [1] and was President of NSW Young Lawyers in 2014. [2] Spohr is a board member of the Tristan Jepson Memorial Foundation, [3] [4] and a member of the Legal Profession Admission Board Legal Qualifications Committee, [5] which is charged with accrediting law degrees in New South Wales. He was the chair of the New South Wales Young Lawyers Criminal Law Committee for over three years and Treasurer of NSW Young Lawyers in 2011. [6]



Spohr obtained his law degree from the University of Wollongong, graduating in Arts and Law (with Honours) in 2006. [7] [8]


Spohr was a prosecutor at the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (New South Wales), then briefly at the Commonwealth DPP, before joining NSW Legal Aid in 2016. He has been involved in widely reported cases, including the $45.3 million fraud by Rajina Subramaniam (said to be one of the largest by an individual in Australia's history), [8] [9] the prosecution of Katherine Abdallah for the murder of her cousin, Suzie Sarkis, [10] [11] and the appeal by Carnita Matthews against her conviction for a traffic offence allegedly committed whilst wearing a burqa. [12] [13] Spohr worked in private practice at one stage, appearing for Andrew Jones, a person of interest in the high-profile coronial inquiry into the disappearance of Janine Vaughan. [14] [15]

Public references to works

Spohr writes and comments regularly on law reform issues, and has been cited by authorities including the New South Wales Law Reform Commission in its Interim report on standard minimum non-parole periods, [16] and in New South Wales Parliament. [17] He has been critical of government policy, for example an article titled "Mandatory Sentencing: It Ought To Be Passed In At The Law And Order Auction”, in response to New South Wales legislation targeting alcohol-related violence, [18] and in an interview for Kill Your Darlings on the same topic. [19]

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  1. "Current Councillors". Law Society of New South Wales. Law Society of New South Wales. Retrieved 9 June 2015.
  2. "Current Office Bearers". NSW Young Lawyers. Law Society of NSW. Retrieved 10 June 2015.
  3. "Who We Are". Tristan Jepson Memorial Foundation. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  4. Whealing, Justin (13 May 2013). "This is the depression we don't have to have". Lawyers Weekly. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  5. "Members of the Legal Profession Admission Board and its Committees". Legal Profession Admission Board. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  6. Susskind, Anne. "Making their mark". LSJ (Law Society Journal) (February 2014): 16.
  7. "Thomas Spohr Profile". Alumni Profiles. University of Wollongong. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  8. 1 2 "UOW Graduate Snags Influential Law Post". University of Wollongong News. 3 December 2013. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  9. Bibby, Paul (3 July 2013). "Sentence cut for $43m fraud". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  10. Carson, Vanda (13 June 2013). "Susan Sarkis' family yell at judge after he grants Katherine Abdallah bail". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  11. Carson, Vanda; Dale, Amy (4 April 2013). "Court sees moment a young life ebbed away". The Australian / The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  12. "Burqa battle takes new turn". Sydney Morning Herald. AAP. 17 September 2011. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  13. "Woman in NSW burqa case seeking costs after appealing her conviction". The Daily Telegraph. AAP. 16 September 2011. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  14. Carroll, Jacinta (21 September 2009). "No evidence, no charges". Western Advocate. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  15. Ralston, Nick (16 September 2012). "Family still seeking truth". Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  16. "Interim report on standard minimum non-parole periods [2012] NSWLRC 134". NSW Law Reform Commission. p. 13. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  17. "Inquiry into judge alone trials under s.132 of the Criminal Procedure Act 1986" (PDF). NSW Legislative Council, Standing Committee on Law and Justice. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  18. Spohr, Thomas. "Mandatory Sentencing: It Ought To Be Passed In At The Law And Order Auction". LSJ (Law Society Journal) (July 2014): 70. Retrieved 23 June 2015.
  19. Potter, Alexandra (3 February 2015). "Lockup or Lockout: The NSW Government's Response to Alcohol-Related Violence". Kill Your Darlings. Retrieved 23 June 2015.