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Section 43 Crimes Act 1900
Abandoning or Exposing a Child Under 7 Years

Abandoning young children is considered to be a serious offence, particularly where it endangers their life.

Under section 43 of the Crimes Act, it is an offence to deliberately abandon a child under the age of 7 years where it endangers their life or poses a risk of serious injury to the child.

However, you may escape charges under this section if you can show to the court that you had a ‘reasonable excuse’ for abandoning your child.

A ‘reasonable excuse’ may include cases where you were forced to abandon your child to prevent serious injury or death to another person (necessity).

If you are found guilty under this section, you could face a maximum penalty of 5 years imprisonment.

The Legislation

Section 43 deals with the offence of “Abandoning or Exposing a Child Under 7 Years” and reads as follows:

43 Abandoning or Exposing a Child Under 7 Years

A person who, without reasonable excuse, intentionally abandons or exposes a child under 7 years of age is guilty of an offence if it causes a danger of death or of serious injury to the child.

Maximum penalty: Imprisonment for 5 years.

Why Sydney Criminal Lawyers®?

At Sydney Criminal Lawyers®, we understand how important your children are to you.

Our dedicated advocates are well-versed in criminal law and can advise you of the steps to take when it comes to fighting the charges in court.

We can help you obtain expert evidence to support your case and will work with you to develop a strong case to ensure that your liberty is best protected.

Sometimes, child neglect allegations may be made by former spouses or family members in an attempt to gain custody of the child in question.

In these cases, we can work hard to examine all the evidence to prove that you did not commit the offence and push to have the charges dropped on this basis.

Alternatively, we can also help you identify any defences or ‘reasonable excuses’ for your conduct. When raised successfully, these will result in a verdict of ‘not guilty.’

Should you wish to accept the charges against you, our criminal law specialists will fight hard to secure the most lenient penalty possible so that you can get on with your life without the charges hanging over your head.

We can help you achieve an outstanding result in your case by preparing sentencing submissions which highlight any mitigating factors that could assist your case.

We can also push to have matters heard in a lower court, where the maximum penalties are much lower.

When it comes to protecting you and your family, it’s important to get the right legal team on your side.

Call us today on (02) 9261 8881 and book a FREE first conference to discuss your ‘child neglect’ matter with us today.


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