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Using a Postal Service to Threaten Serious Harm

Using a postal service to threaten serious harm is an offence under section 471.11(2) of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth), which carries a maximum penalty of 7 years in prison.

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

  1. You used a postal or similar service
  2. You did so to make a threat to cause serious harm to another person, and
  3. You intended the person to whom the threat was made to fear it would be carried out against him or her, or against another person.

‘Fear’ includes apprehension.

It is not necessary for the prosecution to prove that the person to whom the threat was made feared the threat would actually be carried out.

A ‘threat to cause serious harm’ includes a threat to substantially contribute to serious harm.

Self-defence, duress and necessity are defences to the charge.

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