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Weekend jail for offenders
Part-time prisoners: A Perth magistrate is proposing periodic detention. Picture: The West Australian

Serious repeat drink-drivers would be sent behind bars for weekends or on weeks off from fly-in, fly-out work under a plan proposed by a Perth magistrate.

Magistrate Brian Gluestein has suggested periodic detention, which is used in other States and countries, should be introduced as a sentencing option in WA for drink-drivers and people who drive while disqualified.

In a submission to a review of the State's sentencing laws, Mr Gluestein suggested "lower level" offenders such as repeat drink-drivers could be deprived of weekends or time off for up to six months.

The Department of the Attorney-General review, tabled in State Parliament this week, said senior judiciary and legal groups were divided on the issue of periodic detention.

Those submissions in favour of the option mostly supported its introduction only for serious and repeat traffic offenders.

Former District Court Chief Justice Antoinette Kennedy advocated for the introduction of periodic detention, submitting that it had the possible advantage of reducing an offender's opportunity for reoffending while keeping them in contact with the community during the week.

But the Director of Public Prosecutions and Department of Corrective Services believe the use of GPS monitoring would be a better approach.

The review identified practical and cost issues with introducing periodic detention across the State and said the types of offenders it would be suitable for would need to be considered carefully.

It suggested electronic monitoring and partially suspended jail terms should be considered in preference to periodic detention.

Attorney-General Michael Mischin, who will use the report to prepare a package of changes to sentencing laws, said he was considering all the issues canvassed in the review.