Section 14 of the Crimes (Domestic and Personal Violence) Act 2007 is the offence of ‘contravening an apprehended violence order’.
The section prescribes a maximum penalty of 2 years’ imprisonment and/or a fine of $5,500 for anyone who contravenes an AVO.
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Section 14 is titled ‘Offence of contravening apprehended violence order’ and provides that:
(1) A person who knowingly contravenes a prohibition or restriction specified in an apprehended violence order made against the person is guilty of an offence. Maximum penalty: Imprisonment for 2 years or 50 penalty units, or both.
(2) A person is not guilty of an offence against subsection (1) unless:
(a) in the case of an apprehended violence order made by a court, the person was served with a copy of the order or was present in court when the order was made, or
(b) in any other case, the person was served with a copy of the apprehended violence order.
(3) A person is not guilty of an offence against subsection (1) if the contravention of the prohibition or restriction concerned:
(a) was necessary in order to attend mediation under section 21, or
(b) was done in compliance with the terms of a property recovery order.
(4) Unless the court otherwise orders, a person who is convicted of an offence against subsection (1) must be sentenced to a term of imprisonment if the act constituting the offence was an act of violence against a person.
(5) Subsection (4) does not apply if the person convicted was under 18 years of age at the time of the alleged offence.
(6) Where the court determines not to impose a sentence of imprisonment, it must give its reasons for not doing so.
(7) A person is not guilty of an offence of aiding, abetting, counselling or procuring the commission of an offence against subsection (1) if the person is a protected person under the order concerned.
(8) A police officer is to make a written record of the reasons for:
(a) a decision by the police officer not to initiate criminal proceedings against a person for an alleged contravention of subsection (1) or (9) (whether or not the person is arrested), or
(b) a decision by the police officer not to proceed with criminal proceedings against a person for an alleged contravention of subsection (1) or (9), if the police officer or another police officer suspects on reasonable grounds that the person has committed an offence against either subsection or if an alleged contravention of either subsection by the person has been reported to the police officer or another police officer.
(9) A person who attempts to commit an offence against subsection (1) is guilty of an offence against that subsection and is punishable as if the offence attempted had been committed.