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Kidnapping

Kidnapping is an offence under section 86 of the Crimes Act 1900 which attracts a maximum penalty of 14 years in prison.

To establish the offence, the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that:

  1. You took or detained a person
  2. Without the person’s consent
  3. With the intention of holding the person for a ransom, or committing a serious indictable offence, or obtaining any other advantage.

You must be found not guilty if the prosecution is unable to prove each of these elements.

The maximum penalty increases to 20 years in prison where you were in the company of another person or persons, or you caused actual bodily harm to the complainant.

The maximum penalty increases to 25 years in prison where you were in the company of another person or persons, and you caused actual bodily harm to the complainant.

Defences to the charge include:

  1. Self-defence
  2. Duress
  3. Necessity
  4. Being the child’s parent (provided you are not contravening a court order), and
  5. Acting with the consent of the child’s parent.

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