Latest News

The CDPP recently received an overall satisfaction score of 86 per cent from its biennial 2022 Partner Agency Survey.

The CDPP's 2022-26 Corporate Plan is now available.

The Attorney-General of New South Wales today announced the appointment of Ms Sarah McNaughton SC as a judge of the Supreme Court of NSW. 

The CDPP’s Library and Research Services team has won the 2022 Legal Information Service of the Year award announced at the Australian Law Librarians’ Association (ALLA) conference in Hobart on Thursday 26 August.

On 7 July 2022 the Commonwealth Attorney-General, the Honourable Mark Dreyfus QC MP, announced he had declined to proceed further in the prosecution of Mr Bernard Collaery for five offences relating to the alleged unlawful communication of ASIS information contrary to the Intelligence Services

On 11 February 2022, the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions Ms Sarah McNaughton SC announced her decision to decline to proceed further in the criminal prosecutions of Citigroup Global Markets Australia Pty Limited, Deutsche Bank AG and four senior banking executives for cartel offences

The CDPP 2020-21 Annual Report was tabled in Parliament on Wednesday 20 October 2021. 

The Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions, Sarah McNaughton SC, has been extended in the role for a further two years.

The CDPP has launched a new Partner Agency Portal, giving investigators from partner agencies easy and timely access to information.
The last 12 months has tested businesses, including the CDPP, to become more agile to effectively deliver services throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Office of the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions (CDPP) is an independent prosecution service established by Parliament under the Director of Public Prosecutions Act 1983 (Cth) to prosecute alleged offences against Commonwealth law.

The Office of the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions is warning members of the community to beware of scammers claiming to be from the CDPP.
The CDPP’s Partner Agencies will soon have access to a refreshed, scalable and dynamic, secure website to support their investigative work.

This is a joint media release between the Australian Federal Police and the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions

A 24-year-old Sydney man has been jailed for nine years and four months after he posed as a teen to exploit and extort explicit images from children online.

Note: This is a joint media release between the Australian Federal Police and the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions

A serial paedophile who abused children in Australia and Southeast Asia has today been sentenced to 35 years imprisonment, with a non-parole period of 28 years.

On 7 November 2019, Richard Ham (21) and Soo Lee (24) were sentenced in the District Court of New South Wales after pleading guilty to attempting to possess a commercial quantity of methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA), more commonly known as ‘ecstasy’.

Today, Perth woman Alesha Stopforth (30) was sentenced in the District Court of Western Australia to 3 years imprisonment, to be released after serving 16 months upon entering into a Recognisance Order in the amount of $10,000 and to be of good behaviour for a period of 20 months, after pleading

Suzanne Akkari (25) was today sentenced to 18 months imprisonment to be released forthwith on a recognisance of $500 and to be of good behaviour for 18 months, after pleading guilty to a charge of aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring another in the arrangement of a marriage to obtain perman

Today*, Savas Avan (49) was sentenced in the County Court of Victoria to 3 years imprisonment, after pleading guilty to mailing packages containing asbestos to consulates and embassies in Melbourne and Canberra.

Today, Luke Borg (36) was sentenced in the County Court of Victoria after pleading guilty to a number of child sex offences.

A man from Sydney was today sentenced to a total term of imprisonment of 34 years, with a non-parole period of 29 years, for preparing and planning a terrorist attack, threatening to kill the NSW Commissioner of Corrective Services and for an attack on an inmate in custody.

Three Victorian men were today sentenced in the Supreme Court of Victoria for the offence of engaging in a terrorist act.  A jury had earlier found the men guilty of this crime by setting fire to a Shia mosque in suburban Melbourne, causing $1.5 million in damage.

The Victorian County Court has today sentenced Mohamed Osman Omar (36), to four years imprisonment, after he pleaded guilty to defrauding the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) of more than $370,000, and attempting to obtain a further amount of more than $85,000.

Talaiha Inia was today sentenced to two years and nine months’ imprisonment after pleading guilty to lodging false Medicare benefit claims valued at $224,986.80.

Cyberbullying and Threats

Cyberbullying involves the use of the internet and social media to bully, including broadcasting assaults or other crimes via social media or other means of communication. This conduct, or similar conduct by post or phone, may constitute a serious criminal offence.

There are criminal offences for communications containing threats to kill or threats to cause serious harm. It must be proven that the offender intended the receiver to fear that the threat will be carried out.

There are criminal offences for communications which menace, harass or cause offence either by the content of the communication or the manner and frequency of the communication. These may occur by post or by use of a ‘carriage service’ such as through a phone, internet, social media or other application.

To establish this criminal offence the material must be seriously or significantly offensive according to an objective standard as regarded by a reasonable person. Alternatively, to be ‘menacing’ or ‘harassing’ requires a serious potential effect on receiver, such as causing apprehension or fear for the person’s safety, according to an objective standard of a reasonable person.

Aggravated offences involving private sexual material or adult cyber-abuse

Non-consensual sharing of private sexual material has previously been prosecuted under s 474.17 Criminal Code as using a carriage service to menace harass or cause offence, or other offences involving threatening to cause harm. Since 1 September 2018 specific aggravated offences were included into the Criminal Code to address this conduct by s 474.17A(1) and (4) Criminal Code.

If the online offence of menace, harass or cause offence involves the transmission or sharing of private sexual material then a standard aggravated offence may be proven. If 3 or more civil penalty orders have previously been made against the person then the special aggravated offence may be proven.

These offences only apply to material depicting adults. This is because different ‘child abuse material’ offences exist in the Criminal Code (Cth).  Serious criminal penalties apply to child abuse material offences which depict or describe a child under 18 in a sexual pose, or engaged in sexual activity or as a victim of torture cruelty or physical abuse.

There is also a civil penalty regime enforced by the Office of the eSafety Commissioner for image based abuse regarding adults. This relates to the non-consensual sharing of intimate images of an adult. The eSafety Commissioner may facilitate the removal of intimate images shared without consent.

From 24 January 2022 a new civil penalty regime for adult cyber-abuse, which will not be restricted to the sharing of private sexual material, will also be enforced by the eSafety Commissioner.  From that date, the s 474.17A(4) Criminal Code special aggravated offence may also apply to persons who have received 3 or more civil penalty orders for adult cyber-abuse.

Assistance to Victims

Prosecutors in this area work closely with investigators and our Witness Assistance Service to ensure that victims are treated with dignity, courtesy and respect. The CDPP Victims of Crime Policy sets out an important framework for engaging with victims of crime and their families, where appropriate. In some circumstances, measures in the Crimes Act 1914 may be available to be used to assist victims and witnesses to give evidence where they are unable to do so in the ordinary way because of intimidation, distress, emotional trauma or disability.

Main offences

  • s 474.17 Criminal Code Using a carriage service to menace, harass or cause offence
  • s 474.17A(1) Criminal Code Standard aggravated offence involving private sexual material – using a carriage service to menace, harass or cause offence
  • s 474.17A(4) Criminal Code Special aggravated offence – using a carriage service to menace, harass or cause offence
  • s 474.15(1) Criminal Code Using a carriage service to make a threat to kill
  • s 474.15(2) Criminal Code Using a carriage service to make a threat to cause serious harm
  • s 471.12 Using a postal service to menace, harass or cause offence
  • s  471.11(1) Criminal Code Using a postal service to make a threat to kill
  • s 471.11(2) Criminal Code Using a postal service to make a threat to cause serious harm

Penalties

The maximum penalties are terms of imprisonment of 3 years (menace, harass or cause offence), 5 years (standard aggravated offence – menace, harass or cause offence), 7 years (special aggravated offence – menace, harass or cause offence, 10 years (threat to kill), 7 years (threat to cause serious harm).  The Federal Parliament has passed legislation which will increase the maximum penalty for some of these offences by the Online Safety (Transitional Provisions and Consequential Amendments) Act 2021 (Cth). Commencing on 24 January 2022 the maximum penalties are terms of imprisonment for 5 years (menace, harass or cause offence using a carriage service), 6 years for standard aggravated offence involving private sexual material.

Significant Cases

  • Monis v R (2013) 249 CLR 92

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