Charging Practice

  1. The charges in domestic violence cases should reflect the seriousness and persistence of the accused's behaviour, the probable intent, the severity of the injury caused and its long-term effects. They must provide the court with the capacity to impose a sentence which adequately reflects the seriousness of the crime. If an accused offers to plead guilty to a different and possibly less serious charge, this will only be accepted if it enables the court to pass a sentence that reflects the seriousness of the offence. The victim should be advised of the charges brought, and alerted to any change, and consulted and advised when necessary.