Section 315A Crimes Act 1900 | Threatening or Intimidating Victims or Witnesses


Court process is a central feature of our justice system which attempts to ensure that criminal matters are dealt with fairly.

Threatening or intimidating witnesses in a criminal trial undermines the concepts of justice and fairness which the law seeks to uphold. Accordingly, the court can impose harsh penalties for this kind of conduct.

However, by understanding the law in relation to this offence, and with the help of our expert defence team, you can ensure that you have the knowledge and understanding to best fight the allegations against you.

Threatening or intimidating witnesses is an offence under section 315A of the Crimes Act 1900.

That section states that it is a crime to either threaten or cause injury or detriment to a victim or witness with the intention of influencing them not to give “material information” to police officers or other authorities about an indictable offence.

“Material information” refers to any information that a victim or witness has that may be relevant in prosecuting, arresting or convicting someone who has committed an indictable offence.

An indictable offence is one that carries a term of imprisonment of 5 years or more.

If you are found guilty of threatening or intimidating victims or witnesses, you could face a maximum penalty of 7 years imprisonment.

However, this is a maximum penalty and will only apply in the most serious cases.

Our highly experienced criminal law specialists can advise you of the best course of action in order to avoid these harsh penalties.

The Legislation

Section 315A of the Crimes Act 1900 deals with the offence of “threatening or intimidating victims or witnesses” and reads as follows:

315A Threatening or intimidating victims or witnesses

(1) A person who threatens to do or cause, or who does or causes, any injury or detriment to any other person intending to influence any person not to bring material information about an indictable offence to the attention of a police officer or other appropriate authority is liable to imprisonment for 7 years.

(2) In this section:“material information” means information that a person has that might be of material assistance in securing the apprehension of a person who has committed an indictable offence, or the prosecution or conviction of any such person.

Why Sydney Criminal Lawyers?

If you’ve been charged with threatening or intimidating victims or witnesses, our highly experienced criminal lawyers can help you understand the best steps to take when it comes to fighting the charges.

Our lawyers are highly skilled criminal law specialists who have developed tried and tested methods for fighting serious criminal charges over the years.

We can help you secure a positive outcome in your case by carefully examining all the evidence to find problems with the prosecution case and pushing to have the charges dropped on this basis.

Alternatively, if the prosecution refuses to drop the charges, our criminal defence team can assist you in identifying a defence to the charges.

Our lawyers have considerable experience defending clients in some of the most serious criminal matters and will fight hard to protect your liberty.

Should you wish to plead guilty, our lawyers will work hard to ensure that the matter stays in the Local Court, where the maximum penalties are much lower.

We will assist you in obtaining a more lenient penalty by presenting your case in a positive light and persuasive manner before the court.

So for the best defence in your “threatening or intimidating witnesses” case, get in touch with the expert defence team at Sydney Criminal Lawyers on (02) 9261 8881 and book a FREE first conference with one of our criminal law specialists today.