What are Standard Non-Parole Periods in New South Wales?


A ‘standard non-parole parole period’ (SNPP) is a guidepost or reference point for a sentencing judge when he or she is deciding how long a person must spend behind bars (called the ‘non-parole period’) before being eligible to apply for release from prison to serve the remainder of his or her sentence in the community on parole.

According to section 54A of the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act 1999 (NSW), ‘the standard non-parole period represents the non-parole period for an offence… taking into account only the objective factors affecting the relative seriousness of that offence, is in the middle of the range of seriousness.’

Section 54B explains that any applicable SNPP is ‘a matter to be taken into account by a court in determining the appropriate sentence for an offender without limiting the matters that are otherwise required or permitted to be taken into account’.

The same section requires a court to ‘make a record of its reasons for setting a non-parole period that is longer or shorter than the standard non-parole period and… identify in the record of its reasons each factor that it took into account.’

In this way, SNPPs are an important consideration during the sentencing for any applicable offence.

That said, the applicable SNPP is certainly not the only relevant consideration – rather, both objective factors (those relating to the crime itself) and subjective ones (those relating to the defendant) can impact on whether the non-parole period ultimately is longer or shorter than the prescribed SNPP.

And not all offences attract SNPPs. Rather, Table to Division 1A of the Act lists all of the offences that attract SNPPs and the corresponding length of the sentence, which are presently as follows:

Murder — of a police officer, emergency services worker, correctional officer, judicial officer, council law enforcement officer, health worker, teacher, community worker, or other public official, exercising public or community functions and the offence arose because of the victim’s occupation or voluntary work 25 years
Murder — where the victim was a child under 18 years of age 25 years
Murder — in other cases 20 years
Section 26 Crimes Act 1900
(conspiracy to murder)
10 years
Sections 27, 28, 29 or 30 Crimes Act 1900
(attempt to murder)
10 years
Section 33 Crimes Act 1900
(wounding etc with intent to do bodily harm or resist arrest)
7 years
Section 33A(1) Crimes Act 1900
(discharging a firearm with intent to cause grievous bodily harm)
 9 years
Section 33A(2) Crimes Act 1900
(discharging a firearm with intent to resist arrest or detention)
 9 years
Section 35(1) Crimes Act 1900
(reckless causing of grievous bodily harm in company)
5 years
Section 35(2) Crimes Act 1900
(reckless causing of grievous bodily harm)
4 years
Section 35(3) Crimes Act 1900
(reckless wounding in company)
4 years
Section 35(4) Crimes Act 1900
(reckless wounding)
3 years
Section 60(2) Crimes Act 1900
(assault of police officer occasioning bodily harm)
3 years
Section 60(3) Crimes Act 1900
(wounding or inflicting grievous bodily harm on police officer)
5 years
Section 61I Crimes Act 1900
(sexual assault)
7 years
Section 61J Crimes Act 1900
(aggravated sexual assault)
10 years
Section 61JA Crimes Act 1900
(aggravated sexual assault in company)
15 years
Section 61M(1) Crimes Act 1900
(aggravated indecent assault)
5 years
 Section 61M(2) Crimes Act 1900
(aggravated indecent assault)
8 years
Section 66A Crimes Act 1900
(sexual intercourse with a child under 10)
15 years
Section 66B Crimes Act 1900
(attempt, or assault with intent, to have sexual intercourse with a child under 10 years)
10 years
Section 66C(1) Crimes Act 1900
(sexual intercourse with a child 10–14 years)
7 years
Section 66C(2) Crimes Act 1900
(aggravated sexual intercourse with a child 10–14 years)
9 years
Section 66C(4) Crimes Act 1900
(aggravated sexual intercourse with a child 14–16 years)
5 years
Section 66EB(2) Crimes Act 1900
(procure a child under 14 years for unlawful sexual activity)
6 years
Section 66EB(2) Crimes Act 1900
(procure a child 14–16 years for unlawful sexual activity)
5 years
Section 66EB(2A) Crimes Act 1900
(meet a child under 14 years following grooming)
6 years
Section 66EB(2A) Crimes Act 1900
(meet a child 14–16 years following grooming)
5 years
Section 66EB(3) Crimes Act 1900
(groom a child under 14 years for unlawful sexual activity)
5 years
Section 66EB(3) Crimes Act 1900
(groom a child 14–16 years for unlawful sexual activity)
4 years
Section 91D(1) Crimes Act 1900
(induce a child under 14 years to participate in child prostitution)
6 years
Section 91E(1) Crimes Act 1900
(obtain benefit from child prostitution, child under 14 years)
6 years
Section 91G(1) Crimes Act 1900
(use a child under 14 years for child abuse material purposes)
6 years
Section 93GA(1) Crimes Act 1900
(fire a firearm at a dwelling-house or other building with reckless disregard for the safety of any person)
5 years
Section 93GA(1A) Crimes Act 1900
(fire a firearm, during a public disorder, at a dwelling-house or other building with reckless disregard for the safety of any person)
6 years
Section 93GA(1B) Crimes Act 1900
(fire a firearm, in the course of an organised criminal activity, at a dwelling-house or other building with reckless disregard for the safety of any person)
6 years
Section 98 Crimes Act 1900
(robbery with arms etc and wounding)
7 years
Section 112(2) Crimes Act 1900
(breaking etc into any house etc and committing serious indictable offence in circumstances of aggravation)
5 years
Section 112(3) Crimes Act 1900
(breaking etc into any house etc and committing serious indictable offence in circumstances of special aggravation)
7 years
Section 154C(1) Crimes Act 1900
(taking motor vehicle or vessel with assault or with occupant on board)
3 years
Section 154C(2) Crimes Act 1900
(taking motor vehicle or vessel with assault or with occupant on board in circumstances of aggravation)
5 years
Section 154G Crimes Act 1900
(organised car or boat rebirthing activities)
4 years
Section 203E Crimes Act 1900
(bushfires)
5 years
Section 23(2) Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985
(cultivation, supply or possession of prohibited plants), being an offence that involves not less than the large commercial quantity (if any) specified for the prohibited plant concerned under that Act)
10 years
Section 24(2) Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985
(manufacture or production of commercial quantity of prohibited drug), being an offence that:(a) does not relate to cannabis leaf, and(b) if a large commercial quantity is specified for the prohibited drug concerned under that Act, involves less than the large commercial quantity of that prohibited drug)
10 years
Section 24(2) Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985
(manufacture or production of commercial quantity of prohibited drug), being an offence that:(a) does not relate to cannabis leaf, and(b) if a large commercial quantity is specified for the prohibited drug concerned under that Act, involves not less than the large commercial quantity of that prohibited drug)
15 years
Section 25(2) Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985
(supplying commercial quantity of prohibited drug),
being an offence that:(a) does not relate to cannabis leaf, and(b) if a large commercial quantity is specified for the prohibited drug concerned under that Act, involves less than the large commercial quantity of that prohibited drug)
10 years
Section 25(2) Drug Misuse and Trafficking Act 1985
(supplying commercial quantity of prohibited drug),
being an offence that:(a) does not relate to cannabis leaf, and(b) if a large commercial quantity is specified for the prohibited drug concerned under that Act, involves not less than the large commercial quantity of that prohibited drug)
15 years
 Section 7 Firearms Act 1996
(unauthorised possession or use of firearms)
4 years
Section 51(1A) or (2A) Firearms Act 1996
(unauthorised sale of prohibited firearm or pistol)
10 years
Section 51B Firearms Act 1996
(unauthorised sale of firearms on an ongoing basis)
10 years
Section 51D(2) Firearms Act 1996
(unauthorised possession of more than 3 firearms any one of which is a prohibited firearm or pistol)
10 years
Section 7 Weapons Prohibition Act 1998
(unauthorised possession or use of prohibited weapon) — where the offence is prosecuted on indictment)
5 years

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About Ugur Nedim

Ugur Nedim is an Accredited Specialist Criminal Lawyer and Principal at Sydney Criminal Lawyers®, Sydney's leading firm of criminal and traffic defence lawyers.
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