|Gale on behalf of the Darug People v Minister for Lands (Unreported, FCA, 7 September 2004)|
Between: Dennis Charles Gale on behalf of the Darug people (APPLICANT) AND
Minister for Land and Water Conservation for the State of New South Wales, New South Wales Native Title Service Limited, Deerubbin Local Aboriginal Land Council, Edna Mariong Watson, Ian Mariong Watson, Patricia Jarvis, and Sharon Richards (RESPONDENTS).
Judge: Madgwick J
Determination: Native title does not exist in the determination area.
This litigated native title determination relates to an application for a determination of native title on a small area of land on the outskirts of Sydney. The applicant ultimately withdrew from the proceedings, however the respondents sought a determination of the non-existence of native title in relation to the subject land.
The Court considered several issues with respect to the request including whether the making of a determination was proper, the existence of an Aboriginal society and whether there was the requisite continuity of society in the claimant group. It ultimately determined that there was insufficient evidence to establish that the claimants constituted a society observing traditional laws and customs. Similarly, the Court found that there was insufficient evidence of a connection with the land by the claimant group and that it was proper to make a determination as requested by the respondents. The reasons for the judgment are set out in Gale v Minister for Land and Water Conservation for the State of New South Wales  FCA 374 (31 March 2004).