Hindering an investigation is an offence under section 315 of the Crimes Act 1900, which carries a maximum penalty of 7 years in prison.
To establish the offence, the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that:
(A) The investigation of a serious indictable offence committed by another, or
(B) the discovery of evidence about a serious indictable offence committed by another, or
(C) the arrest of another who committed a serious indictable offence, and
A ‘serious indictable offence’ is one that carries a maximum penalty of at least 5 years in prison, which includes:
A serious indictable offence is deemed to have been committed if an officer engaged in detecting and investigating offenders suspects on reasonable grounds that such an offence has been committed.
Examples of hindering an investigation may include:
It is not an offence against the section to merely refuse or fail to divulge information.
Duress is a defence to the charge.
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