New Sentencing Laws Allowing Penalty Reductions

The South Australian Parliament has recently passed laws allowing for substantial reductions in criminal penalties. The laws will allow defendants to receive penalty reductions of up to 40 percent when pleading guilty not more than 4 weeks after first appearing in court for the relevant offence(s). Lesser discounts will be available where defendants plead guilty at later stages.

The laws are expected to apply to all criminal and traffic offences before the South Australian Courts. However, the application of the laws will be limited where mandatory minimum penalties apply.

The Criminal Law (Sentencing) (Guilty Pleas) Amendment Bill 2012 is currently awaiting assent and is expected to come into force in the near future. The laws are intended to apply to proceedings instituted after the commencement of the Act, regardless of when the offence(s) occurred.

It is recommended that individuals intending to plead guilty to criminal or traffic offences should seek legal advice regarding the application of the new laws.

>> Criminal Law (Sentencing) (Guilty Pleas) Amendment Bill 2012

>> Parliament Hansard 2nd Reading Speech - see page 2426 (page 44 of 74)

>> LSC Flow Chart - Sentencing Discounts

The information contained within this article is intended as a general overview and discussion of the subjects dealt with. The information provided here was accurate as of the day it was posted; however, the law may have changed since that date. This information is not intended to be, and should not be used as, a substitute for taking legal advice in any specific situation. Craig Fabbian and Fabbian Lawyers are not responsible for any actions taken or not taken on the basis of this information.