The idea sharia could operate as part of Australian law was "misconceived" and minority practices that offend moral standards should be abandoned, the former High Court judge Sir Gerard Brennan said last night.

"No court could apply and no government could administer two parallel systems of law, especially if they reflect - as they inevitably would reflect - different fundamental standards," he said.

To do so would result in two legal systems and confirm dual cultures, Sir Gerard said during a lecture in honour of the former law professor Hal Wootten at the University of NSW.

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