Breach Intervention Order – Repeat Offence

This is a case study on a charge of Breach Intervention Order that is a repeat offence.

What is alleged to have occured?
Our client was charged with breaching an intervention order that his ex-wife had placed on him. His children were also on the order. Our client had not seen his kids in over 12 months and the order prevented our client from contacting his ex-wife unless it is due to child care arrangements. He had sent a number of texts seeking to meet up in person with his ex-wife to discuss their relationship and the kids.

He was desperate to reach an agreement with his ex-wife and to avoid the costs and delays of going through the Family Law Court. At the time, he thought this was the best way to do that. Whilst the texts were harmless on the face of it, they constituted a breach of the order. It was also the second time he had breached it in almost identical circumstances. He was given a good behaviour bond at the first instance.

His ex-wife sought for him to be charged for breaching the order again. The offending is considered reasonably serious because our client had ignored the court-imposed order. This offending breached a good behaviour bond that he was sentenced to on the last occasion. In all his previous interactions with the court, he had not engaged a lawyer.

What happened at court?
We represented the client at the Broadmeadows Magistrates’ Court and successfully handled this matter despite it being a case of Breach Intervention Order that is a repeat offence.

The client had offended in an identical way to previous offending, and therefore was unable to rely on the fact that he did not know it was a breach of an order. Because the client came in early and prepared his matter with us, we were able to get him engaged in services prior to court.

The matter was listed for mention and proceeded as a plea. The client pleaded to a single charge of Breaching Intervention Order by texting the affected family member. Submissions were made highlighting the fact that our client had limited criminal priors, and that he at the time of the offending had not seen his kids in over a year and he was merely attempting to resolve childcare arrangements with his ex-partner via text.

What was the result?
The magistrate sentenced the client to a further good behaviour bond without recording a conviction – taking into account the fact that he had engaged with a general practitioner and provided character reference letters which attested to his good character in many aspects of his life.

And despite this case being that of a Breach Intervention Order that is a repeat offence, we were further successful in getting an expedited listing of the charge for ‘breach of good behaviour bond’ on the same day. This meant that our client walked away from court with no further matters hanging over his head.

Elements of Breach Intervention Order:
  • A family violence intervention order has been made against the accused; and
  • The accused has been served with a copy of the order; or
  • An explanation of the order was given to the accused in accordance with section 57(1) or 96(1) of the Family Violence Protection Act 2008; and
  • The accused contravened the order.
Related case studies
DISCLAIMER: This is a real case study of an actual case from our files. Details pertaining to the client have been changed to protect their privacy. The sentence imposed and the charge have not been altered. These case studies are published to demonstrate real outcomes and give an indication of possible tariffs in Court. We do not guarantee a similar case on these charges will get the same result. Please note that we post results at our discretion, therefore while many case studies are average results, others are notable for their exceptional outcomes. PUBLISHED 20/09/2018