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Office Number: (03) 9077 4834 | After Hours Number: 0434 701 484
Office Number: (03) 9077 4834
After Hours Number: 0434 701 484

False Imprisonment

If you have been charged with False Imprisonment, here is some information to know and consider in seeking legal advice with Emma Turnbull Lawyers.

Elements of the offence

For the prosecution to prove the offence of False Imprisonment, they must prove beyond a reasonable doubt all of the elements of the offence which have been established under Common Law and are as follows:

  1. The accused deprived another person of their liberty; and
  2. The accused intended to deprive that person of their liberty; and
  3. The deprivation of their liberty was unlawful in that it was not authorised under law, for example by a court order or a right under statute.

Will I have to go to court?

Charges for False Imprisonment can be dealt with summarily in the Magistrates’ Court. However, depending on the circumstances of the offence and any other charges laid, the case may be heard in a higher court.  Expert legal advice is important in ensuring the most appropriate defence to a charge of False Imprisonment.

Once the case goes to court, it is up to the prosecution to prove all the elements of the offence. It is important that you seek expert legal advice to prepare a defence and to represent you in court as this offence carries a significant maximum sentence of imprisonment.

Maximum penalty:

The maximum penalty this offence carries is 2 years imprisonment, if it is dealt with in the Magistrates’ Court, but 10 years imprisonment if dealt with in the County or Supreme Court.

What sentences are usually given?

Between 1 July 2016 to 30 June 2021, 70 people were sentenced for False Imprisonment in the higher courts, with 79% (55 people) sentence to imprisonment.  Sentences imposed ranged up to 10 years, depending on the seriousness of the offending, with a median sentence of 1year 6 months.

Between 1 July 2018 to 30 June 2021 the Magistrates Court dealt with 232 cases and imprisonment was imposed in 69% of cases, and a community corrections order in 21% of cases.

What do I do now?

To ensure the best chance of a successful defence, it is important to get in contact with an expert criminal lawyer as soon as possible. At Emma Turnbull Lawyers, we have experienced criminal defence lawyers who can assist you in defending this charge.