Understanding Serious Offences: Affray, Riot, and Violent Disorder in New South Wales (NSW)
In NSW, violent disturbances can sometimes disrupt the peaceful atmosphere. In such cases, offences like affray, riot, and violent disorder are taken very seriously, and the legal system does not hesitate to impose severe penalties for those found guilty.
Affray: As articulated in the Crimes Act 1900 of NSW, affray is defined by an individual’s use or threat of unlawful violence towards another person. This act or threat must be severe enough that any bystander of reasonable firmness would fear for their safety. The repercussions for this crime are steep. If one is convicted in the District Court, they could face a maximum of ten years behind bars. On the other hand, convictions in the Local Court could lead to up to two years of imprisonment.
Riot: The act of rioting, governed by section 93B of the Crimes Act 1900, is another grave offence. Engaging in such activities can result in lengthy imprisonment of up to 15 years.
Violent Disorder: The Summary Offences Act 1998 covers this particular offence. For an act to be considered a violent disorder, it must involve at least three individuals who use or threaten unlawful violence, causing a bystander of reasonable firmness to fear for their safety. Convictions can result in six-month imprisonment or a hefty fine of up to $1100.
It’s crucial to underscore that these charges are predominantly invoked during public disturbances. The specific charges and their associated penalties can shift depending on the degree of violence exhibited, any resultant damages, and the defendant’s past criminal record.
Considering the severity of these charges, seeking professional legal representation is imperative. Expert criminal lawyers bring a wealth of knowledge and experience, equipping them to provide a tenacious defence. They can adeptly guide individuals through the intricate maze of the legal system, ensuring that their rights are upheld.
If you find yourself entangled in such a situation, whether you’ve been formally charged or anticipate a police interview, don’t hesitate. Contact our seasoned criminal lawyers for guidance and ensure you’re equipped with the best defence.