The offence of ‘Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm’ is an offence contrary to section 59 of the Crimes Act 1900 with the maximum penalty of 5 years Imprisonment if dealt with in the District Court.
It should also be noted that if the offence is committed in the company of another individual, this would carry a higher penalty, with a maximum penalty of 7 years imprisonment if dealt with in the District Court.
These types of matters are generally dealt with in the Local Court before a Local Court Magistrate. The maximum penalty in the Local Court is 2 years imprisonment and/or a fine of $5,500.
Parliament in Australia has set the ‘maximum penalty’ for each offence as the court considers all the facts as well as circumstances surrounding the offending on sentence.
To be found guilty of the offence of ‘Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm’, it should be noted that the Police Prosecution must prove the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
- You struck, touched, or applied force to another; and
- You did so intentionally or recklessly; and
- Without consent or lawful excuse; and
- That action caused bodily harm to the other person.
In R v McIntyre, this case has discussed the meaning of the term ‘Actual Bodily Harm’ and case law states that any injury which interferes with another person’s health or comfort is ‘Actual Bodily Harm.’
Furthermore, in the case of R v McIntyre, it was further noted that injury does not need to be permanent but it ‘’must be more than merely transient or trifling.’
It is very important that you speak with a lawyer if you have been charged with an offence so that you can get the appropriate legal advice which you require prior to going to court.
Our team of experienced solicitors are there for you and can help you answer all your questions, so be sure to contact Nicopoulos Sabbagh Lawyers.
*This article correctly reflects the Laws of NSW as at 23rd June 2022.
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