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Assault Offences

Types of Assault Offences

Assault offences are one of the most commonly charged offences in NSW, so we deal with them on a day to day basis. Being charged with such an offence must be taken seriously as severe penalties can be imposed, such as imprisonment, weekend detention and community service orders.

Below are some of the most common Assault offences:

Common Assault

The offence of Common Assault is the assault charge most frequently issued by the police. It is the least serious of the assault offences, and can be charged where it is alleged that one person assaults another, but the injury caused is not severe (i.e. does not cause any lasting injury or scarring), as set out within section 61 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW).

Penalties: The penalties for common assault can still be severe, with the maximum penalty at two years imprisonment.

Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm

Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm is the second most serious assault offence after Assault Occasioning Grievous Bodily Harm. This offence can be charged where an injury arises out of an alleged assault that is not permanent, but results in a wounding, for example when a person’s skin is broken.

Penalties: The maximum penalty for this offence is five years imprisonment. Where the offender is in the company of another person or persons this increases to seven years.

Attempts to Choke

Generally, the charge of Attempt to Choke may be laid when the accused has either (i) attempted to choke someone, or (ii) attempted to make the person insensible, unconscious, or incapable of resistance. The offence is taken very seriously by the courts, with a maximum penalty of 25 years imprisonment, and legal advice should be sought immediately upon being charged.

Penalties: As indicated above, a conviction of Attempt to Choke carries a maximum penalty of 25 years imprisonment, under section 37 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW).

Reckless Grievous Bodily Harm or Wounding

The offence of Reckless Grievous Bodily Harm or Wounding is generally charged when an act or omission has caused grievous bodily harm or wounding, but there was no intent. There are several different forms of this offence prescribed in section 35 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW). In determining which offence to charge you with, the Police will consider whether you wounded someone and/or whether you inflicted grievous bodily harm, as well as whether you were in the company of others at the time of the offence.

Penalties: Depending on the particular offence you are charged with, the maximum penalty can range from seven years imprisonment up to 14 years imprisonment. However, with proper legal representation, it is usually possible to avoid these severe penalties.

Assault Police

There are several offences that constitute an assault on a police officer, as prescribed by section 60 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW). Very broadly, the charge may be laid where the accused has assaulted or harassed a police officer, while the officer was in the execution of his/her duty. However, if such action is in reaction to actions undertaken by the police officer in the course of their duties, or simply because the person is a police officer, the offence still applies.

Penalties: The least severe of the possible offences does not involve any form of bodily harm, and carries a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment. An assault that causes actual bodily harm will carry a maximum term of seven years, while a malicious wounding or causing of grievous bodily harm involves a maximum penalty of 12 years. However, with proper legal representation, it is usually possible to avoid these severe penalties.

Assault Occasioning Grievous Bodily Harm

The charge of Assault Occasioning Grievous Bodily Harm may be laid where the accused has maliciously inflicted a very serious injury on someone.

Penalties: Under Section 33 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW), whoever wounds or causes grievous bodily harm with intent is liable to imprisonment for up to 25 years. However, with proper legal representation, these severe penalties can usually be avoided.

Assault during Public Disorder

This type of charge refers to any assault which occurs during a large-scale public disorder, as prescribed under section 59A of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW). The charge can carry custodial sentences, so it is important to seek legal representation.

Penalties: Where the assault is not serious in nature, and does not lead to any actual bodily harm, the maximum penalty is five years imprisonment. However where actual bodily harm is caused as a result of the assault, the maximum penalty is imprisonment for seven years.

Legal Defences for Assault Charges

If you have been charged with any type of assault, there may be a defence available to you, including: Self-defence, duress and necessity. In some instances intoxication is also a defence. Often charges of assault arise as a consequence of alleged violence between several people, which can lead to charges being laid against multiple individuals. Sometimes the alleged victim is also involved in perpetrating the violence and this causes confusion in determining ‘who started it’ and who was merely defending themselves. It will be necessary for the police in every offence to prove that the accused was the person who committed the offence.

Sexual Related Assaults

Indecent Assault

The charge of Indecent Assault may be laid when the accused has assaulted someone in a way which carries a sexual connotation, or the intention to obtain sexual gratification. The charge is different to Sexual Assault, which requires penetration.

Penalties: A charge of indecent assault carries a maximum penalty of up to five years imprisonment. There is also a more serious charge of Aggravated Sexual Assault, which carries intensified maximum penalty of seven years imprisonment. The circumstances of aggravation are established when: The offence is committed in company, the victim is under the offender’s authority, the victim has a serious physical disability, or the victim has a serious intellectual disability. The elements for indecent assault need to be established first before considering these aggravating factors.

Sexual Assault

The charge of Sexual Assault may be laid when the accused has sexual intercourse with another person, without the consent of the other person, and knowing that the other person does not consent to the sexual intercourse.

Penalties: The maximum possible penalty for the charge of Sexual Intercourse without Consent is 14 years imprisonment. Any person who attempts to commit a sexual assault-related offence may face the same penalties as if they actually committed the offence. However, the penalties vary depending on the gravity of the particular offence. Factors which determine the gravity include: Degree of violence, physical hurt inflicted, form of forced intercourse, degree of humiliation and duration of the offence.

Aggravated Sexual Assault

It is also possible to be charged with the more serious offence of Aggravated Sexual Assault, which carries penalties of up to 20 years imprisonment. Aggravating circumstances to a sexual assault offence include:

• At the time of, or immediately before or after the commission of the offence, the offender intentionally or recklessly inflicted actual bodily harm on the victim or any other person present or nearby
• At the time of, or immediately before or after the commission of the offence, the offender threatened to inflict actual bodily harm on the alleged victim or any other person who is present or nearby by means of an offensive weapon or instrument
• The offence was committed in the company of another person or persons
• Victim is under 16 years of age Victim is under authority of offenderVictim has a serious physical disabilityVictim has a cognitive impairment
• Offender broke and entered into dwelling-house or other building with the intention of committing the offence or any other serious indictable offence
• Offender deprived the victim of their liberty before or after the commission of the offence

Aggravated Sexual Assault in Company

It is also possible to be charged with the more serious offence of Aggravated Sexual Assault, which carries penalties of up to 20 years imprisonment. Aggravating circumstances to a sexual assault offence include:

Legal Defences for a Sexual Assault Charge

There are several defences available to you, should you be charged with a Sexual Assault offence. A couple of the major ones are: Denying the intercourse and identifying a motive for the complainant to lie about it or admitting to having intercourse with the complainant, but claiming it was consensual. There are also a number of mitigating circumstances, which may lead to a reduced sentence, including: Youth of offender: for young offenders an emphasis is often placed on rehabilitation; the offender has good prospects of rehabilitation; remorse shown by the offender; early guilty plea; mental condition: may warrant a sentence other than full time custody; the offender does not have any record or significant record of previous convictions; punishment meted out by others, such as abuse and harassment and threats of injury to person and property, including personal harassment by media representatives

What is ‘Consent’?

A person knows that another person does not consent to sexual intercourse if the person:
• Knows that the other person does not consent;
• Is reckless as to whether the other person consents;
• or Has no reasonable grounds for believing that the other person consents
• A person does not consent to sexual intercourse if the person:
• Does not have the capacity to consent due to age or cognitive impairment;
• Does not have the opportunity to consent because they are unconscious or asleep;
• Consents due to threats of force or terror;
• Consents due to being unlawfully detained
• Self-induced intoxication is not relevant for the purposes of determining consent.

Apprehended Violence Orders

Apprehended Violence Orders are orders of the court designed to prevent physical violence, stalking, harassment and intimidation toward a person by another. The granting of an AVO can have drastic implications, and breaching an AVO may lead to criminal charges. If you believe the AVO was unnecessary, obtained by a false complaint, or obtained for some advantage (e.g. preventing one parent from seeing their children), it’s important that you seek legal advice immediately.

What are the Penalties for Breaching an AVO?

It is a criminal offence for the defendant to knowingly breach an interim or final Apprehended Violence Order. The maximum penalty on conviction is a $5,500 fine or two years imprisonment or both. If the breach constitutes an act of violence and the defendant is at least 18 years of age, the defendant may be sentenced to a period of imprisonment.

Action to Take

Successfully defending an application for an AVO sought by your spouse or former partner can sometimes be difficult for a number of reasons. Firstly, applications need only be proved on the balance of probabilities, rather than the higher criminal standard of beyond a reasonable doubt. Secondly, applications are often taken out by police on the behalf of the alleged Person In Need Of Protection (PINOP). This means you may find yourself in a position where the alleged PINOP is legally represented by a police prosecutor and you are not. Thirdly, most allegations occur where there are no witnesses, and so it is sometimes difficult to adequately support your point of view. For this reason, it is imperative that you seek legal representation in order to effectively navigate these many interlinked factors.

What the Police Must Prove

• In order for the Police to prove their case at Court, they must prove each of the following matters beyond a reasonable doubt.
• The accused contravened a prohibition or restriction specified in an order made against the person.
• The contravention was done or made knowingly.
• It will be necessary for the Police in every offence to prove that the accused was the person who committed the offence.

How can Sydney Criminal Defence Lawyers help?

Our Criminal Lawyers will carefully consider your case, advise you on all your legal options, and recommend the best way forward.

Call us now on 02 8059 7121 or contact us after hours on 0420 998 650 or text 24hrs to book an appointment with one of our solicitors.

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Sydney Criminal Defence Lawyers are highly experienced at helping clients through the ordeal of being charged with a criminal offence. Criminal charges often stem from an honest misunderstanding, or a momentary lapse in judgement, and we make it a priority to be understanding and empathetic when dealing with every client, no matter what the charge.

As a firm specialising in specific areas of criminal and traffic law, we provide expert legal advice which is tailored specifically to your needs and your case. Our most important job is to defend your rights and, in doing so, we will guide you through the entire process, from your first contact with the police, all the way through to the finalisation of your matter.

Our criminal law solicitors have experience in all areas of Criminal Law including:

How can Daoud Legal: Sydney Criminal Defence & Traffic Lawyers help?

Our Criminal Lawyers will carefully consider your case, advise you on all your legal options, and recommend the best way forward.

Call us now at  1300 885 646 or text 0420 998 650 24hrs to book an appointment with one of our lawyers.

Best Criminal Lawyers in Sydney, NSW:

Are you facing criminal charges? Traversing the complex criminal justice system can be daunting, but with the right legal representation, you can achieve the best possible outcome. At Daoud Legal: Sydney Criminal Defence & Traffic Lawyers, our team of dedicated and experienced criminal lawyers in NSW are here to protect your rights and fight for your future.

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Our Sydney criminal defence law firm is led by a team of Accredited Criminal Law Specialists, recognised by the Law Society of New South Wales for their exceptional expertise in navigating the intricate world of criminal law. With years of experience handling a wide range of criminal matters, from traffic offences to the most serious charges, we have an in-depth understanding of the law and a proven track record of success.

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Whether you've been charged with a criminal offence, faced with a domestic violence allegation, assault charge or need assistance with a traffic-related incident, our criminal lawyers in Sydney, NSW are equipped to handle it all. We offer comprehensive legal services, including:

Criminal Offences

Our experienced criminal defence lawyers have a deep understanding of the complexities involved in criminal offences, ranging from assault and theft to fraud and drug-related charges. We will thoroughly investigate the details of your case, gather all relevant evidence, and develop a robust defence strategy to protect your rights and achieve the best possible outcome. Whether you're facing misdemeanour or felony charges, our team is committed to providing you with the highest quality legal representation to secure the most favourable result.

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From drink driving and drug driving to speeding and disqualified driving, we have the expertise to effectively represent you in court and work towards the best possible outcome. Our Sydney traffic lawyers will carefully review the evidence, challenge any irregularities, and explore all available options to minimise the consequences you may face, including fines, license suspensions, and criminal convictions from traffic law.

Domestic Violence

Our leading criminal lawyers specialise in defending against Apprehended Violence Orders (AVOs) and other domestic violence-related charges such as sexual assault. We will work tirelessly to protect your rights, challenge any false or exaggerated claims, and ensure that you receive a fair hearing. Our goal is to secure the best possible outcome, whether that means having the charges dismissed or negotiating a favourable resolution.

Drug Offences

Drug-related charges, such as possession, trafficking, or manufacturing, can have severe consequences, including substantial fines and lengthy prison sentences. Our criminal defence lawyers have a deep understanding of the intricacies of drug offence laws and will work to build a robust defence strategy tailored to your specific situation. We will thoroughly investigate the circumstances of your case, challenge any unlawful search and seizure procedures, and explore all available options to minimise the penalties you may face, including the possibility of diversionary programs or drug rehabilitation.

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Sexual offence charges can be complex and emotionally charged, which is why it's crucial to have an experienced legal team on your side. Our team of criminal lawyers will handle your case with the utmost sensitivity and discretion, working to protect your rights and ensure a fair trial. We will thoroughly investigate the details of your case, challenge any weaknesses in the prosecution's evidence, and explore all available legal defences to achieve the best possible outcome, whether that means having the charges reduced or securing a not-guilty verdict.

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The stakes are incredibly high when facing charges for murder or manslaughter, and it's essential to have a team of highly skilled criminal defence lawyers fighting for your rights. Our experts will meticulously examine the evidence, identify potential legal defences, and develop a comprehensive strategy to defend you against these serious allegations. We understand the gravity of these charges and will work tirelessly to protect your interests, whether that means negotiating a plea bargain or mounting a vigorous defence in court.

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White-collar crimes, such as fraud, embezzlement, and money laundering, can have severe consequences, both legally and professionally. Our criminal defence lawyers have extensive experience in navigating the complexities of these cases, and we are committed to providing you with the highest level of legal representation. We will thoroughly investigate the allegations, challenge any flaws in the prosecution's case, and work to minimise the potential penalties you may face, including fines, restitution, and imprisonment.

Bail Applications

Being denied bail can have a significant impact on your life, both personally and professionally. Our Sydney criminal lawyers are well-versed in the intricacies of the bail application process and will work tirelessly to secure your release from custody. We will present a compelling case to the court, highlighting any relevant factors, such as your ties to the community, the strength of your defence, and the likelihood of you appearing for future court appearances. Our goal is to ensure that you can continue to manage your personal and professional obligations while your case is pending.

Sentencing Matters

If you have been found guilty of a criminal offence, the sentencing process can be daunting and stressful. Our criminal lawyers are experienced in advocating on your behalf during the sentencing phase, with the goal of securing the most favourable outcome possible. We will thoroughly review the details of your case,gather character references and evidence of your rehabilitation efforts, and present a compelling argument to the court. Our aim is to persuade the judge to impose a sentence that minimises the impact on your life, such as a non-conviction order,community service, or a suspended sentence.

Appeals

If you have been convicted of a criminal offence and believe that there are grounds for an appeal, our team of experienced criminal lawyers is here to help. We will meticulously review the details of your case, identify any legal errors or procedural irregularities, and prepare a compelling appeal on your behalf. Our goal is to secure a re-trial or have your conviction overturned, ensuring that you receive the justice you deserve. Whether you're appealing against a conviction or a sentence, we will work tirelessly to protect your rights and achieve the best possible outcome.

Jury Trials

For the most serious criminal charges, a jury trial may be the best option to secure a favourable outcome. Our criminal lawyers are highly experienced in presenting compelling cases to juries, using their in-depth knowledge of criminal law and trial tactics to challenge the prosecution's evidence and raise reasonable doubt. We will work closely with you to develop a tailored trial strategy, meticulously preparing witnesses, cross-examining the prosecution's case, and delivering persuasive closing arguments. Our law firm in Sydney goal is to ensure that the jury fully understands the complexities of your case and reaches a just verdict.

Mental Health Applications

In some cases, an individual's mental health may be a mitigating factor in a criminal case. Our criminal lawyers have experience in navigating the legal system to secure favourable outcomes for clients with mental health issues. We will work with mental health professionals to assess your condition, gather relevant evidence, and present a compelling case to the court. This may include applying for diversionary programs, seeking mental health treatment orders, or advocating for alternative sentencing options that prioritise rehabilitation over punishment.

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At Daoud Legal: Sydney Criminal Defence & Traffic Lawyers, our goal is to provide you with the best possible legal representation, ensuring that your rights are protected and that you achieve the most favourable outcome in your case. We understand the gravity of criminal charges and the long-lasting impact they can have on your life, which is why we approach each case with the utmost care and dedication.

Our expert criminal lawyers will work tirelessly to build a robust defence strategy, drawing on their extensive knowledge of criminal law and their ability to navigate the court system effectively. We will thoroughly investigate the details of your case, gather all relevant evidence, and work closely with you to develop a tailored approach that addresses the unique circumstances of your situation.

Helping You Maneuver the Criminal Justice System with Confidence

The criminal justice system can be complex and intimidating, but with our team of experienced criminal lawyers by your side, you can navigate it with confidence. We will guide you through every step of the legal process, ensuring that you understand your rights, the charges against you, and the potential consequences you may face.

Our lawyers will handle all communication with the police, prosecutors, and the court, allowing you to focus on your personal andprofessional obligations. We will provide youwith clear and comprehensive legal advice, keeping you informed every step of the way and empowering you to make informed decisions about your case.

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At Daoud Legal: Sydney Criminal Defence & Traffic Lawyers, we are committed to achieving the best possible outcome for our clients. Whether that means securing a not-guilty verdict, negotiating a favourable plea bargain, or minimising the penalties you face, our team will work tirelessly to ensure that your interests are protected.

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Every criminal case is unique, and at Daoud Legal: Sydney Criminal Defence & Traffic Lawyers, we understand that a one-size-fits-all approach simply won't do. That's why we take the time to thoroughly understand the details of your case, your personal circumstances, and your goals, before developing a customised legal strategy that addresses your specific needs.

Whether you're facing a minor traffic offence or a serious criminal charge, our lawyers will work closely with you to explore all available options and identify the most effective path forward. We will provide you with candid and honest advice, helping you to make informed decisions about the best course of action.

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Our commitment to excellence is reflected in the countless successful outcomes we have achieved for our clients. From having charges dropped or reduced to securing non- conviction orders and avoiding jail time, our team has a proven track record of delivering exceptional results. Don't just take our word for it – hear from our satisfied clients who have experienced firsthand the dedication and professionalism of our criminal lawyers

"I couldn't have asked for better legal representation than what I received from Robert and his team. They demonstrated a deep understanding of the law and a clear strategy for my defence, and I am thrilled with the outcome of my case."

Tony K.

"Heath was extremely experienced and handled everything with great professionalism. He has been an invaluable asset in my case, and I highly recommend him to anyone facing criminal charges."

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"The case and AVO were dismissed. I highly recommend Rob and his team! He was exceptional in his handling of my case, and I am grateful for his expertise and tireless efforts."

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Accessible and Affordable Legal Representation

We understand that facing criminal charges can be a significant financial burden, which is why we are committed to providing accessible and affordable legal representation. We offer a range of payment options, including fixed fees for many of our services, as well as realistic cost estimates for more complex matters.

Additionally, we provide a free initial consultation, during which one of our experienced criminal defence lawyers will assess your case, advise you of your options, and explain the optimal path to success. This ensures that you have the information you need to make an informed decision about your legal representation, without any upfront costs.

Convenient Location and Accessibility

At Daoud Legal: Sydney Criminal Defence & Traffic Lawyers, we have coverage across Sydney, the greater Sydney region and the Central Coast, ensuring that you can access our services no matter where you are located. Our criminal lawyers in Sydney, NSW are available to meet with you in person, as well as via video conferencing or phone, providing you with the flexibility and convenience you need during this challenging time.

FAQs About Criminal Law

What areas of criminal law do Sydney criminal defence & traffic lawyers specialise in?

Our experienced team handles all types of criminal cases from traffic matters to serious indictable offences in local courts throughout NSW.

What services do leading criminal lawyers in Sydney CBD offer?

As one of Sydney's most trusted criminal law firms, we provide expert legal advice, representation in court and can attend all courts throughout NSW on your behalf.

Do criminal and traffic defence lawyers work together?

Yes, our criminal and traffic defence lawyers work closely as a team. This ensures streamlined support whether you are charged with criminal or traffic offences.

What is included in a free first appointment with an experienced lawyer?

The initial consultation is completely free of charge and involves a detailed discussion of your case, adviceon the best course of action and fixed fees for representation if required.

How can the team of expert lawyers represent clients accused of criminal offences?

Our senior lawyers are well-versed in all possible defences and mitigating factors. We will strongly advocate for you to obtain the best possible outcome, from diversion programs to dismissed charges.

Do the lawyers attend specialist courts like the Court of Criminal Appeal?

Yes, our firm's dedicated criminal lawyers have represented clients in all levels of trial and appellate courts including the Supreme Court of NSW and Court of Criminal Appeal.

How can calling the best Sydney criminal law firm help with criminal matters?

Engaging experienced defenders sooner provides vital strategic advantages. Contact us for immediate guidance from Adelaide's leaders in criminal defence.

What makes the criminal lawyers Sydney highly experienced in complex criminal cases?

Our criminal defence lawyers based in Sydney have collectively defended countless serious charges at various levels of court. This depth of practical expertise gives clients the upper hand.

Do the experienced criminal lawyers provide criminal law advice?

Absolutely. In addition to representation, our criminal lawyers are available to discuss your matter, explain the legal process and provide clarity on options for obtaining the best possible outcome.

How can the team help if charged with a criminal offence in NSW court?

Call our lawyers for skilled, strategic and caring guidance. With decades defending all types of criminal cases, our absolute best defence gives you the greatest chance of successfully fighting charges.

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Drug Charges Successfully Defended / Dropped

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Drunk Driving Charges Successfully Defended /Dropped

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Successful Diversions from Prison for Mental Health Reasons

Expertise

1

Criminal Law

Our most important job is to protect your rights and provide expert legal advice. We will guide you through the entire court process.
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2

Traffic Law

We will diligently gather the necessary documentation, provide you with professional legal advice, and fearlessly represent you in court.
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3

Drug Offences

Drug Offences are among the most serious offences in the eyes of the Criminal Law Courts. However, the penalties associated with Drug.
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4

Assault Offences

Our most important job is to protect your rights and provide expert legal advice. We will guide you through the entire court process.
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5

Fraud Offences

As Fraud is often considered a pre-meditated or manipulative crime, it is looked upon very seriously by the court system.
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6

Firearm Offences

There are strict rules in place governing the lawful possession of a firearm in Australia. Firstly, every person who possesses a firearm must be.
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