Offence to Contravene Certain Conduct Conditions

Offence to Contravene Certain Conduct Conditions

In Victoria, the offence of Contravene Conduct Conditions of Bail is in section 30A of the Bail Act 1977, which is failing to comply with bail conditions.

Do the Police want to speak with you because they are accusing you of Contravening Conduct Conditions of Bail? The Police may make an application at Court to revoke your bail if they accuse you of Contravening Conduct Conditions of your Bail.
 
You must make a time to speak with one of our experienced defence lawyers, who can assist you in dealing with this allegation and oppose an application by Police to revoke your bail.

Police interview
Before you speak with the Police about Contravening Conduct Conditions of your Bail, you should contact one of our lawyers. You will have important questions such as:

  • Should I avoid the Police?
  • Should I deny the allegations?
  • Will I be remanded into custody?
Our lawyers can speak with the Police and try to persuade them to not make an application revoke your bail.

Our lawyers can also be ready to re-apply for bail for you.

Pleading not guilty
If you deny the Police allegation that you have Contravened Conduct Conditions of your Bail, you should speak with one our lawyers who can assist you in contesting the allegation.

There may be evidence which needs to be gathered, such as:

  • CCTV from the Police station if the Police accuse you of failing to report,
  • We may need to obtain a statement from a support worker, if the Police accuse you of attending counselling sessions or a rehabilitation clinic if they are conditions of your bail,
  • Evidence which proves you were not at a location you are prohibited from attending as part of your bail may need to retrieved.
Pleading guilty
If you decide to plead guilty to Contravening a Conduct Condition of Bail, it is best that you wait for the outcome of the substantive charges for which you are on bail. If you are found guilty of the substantive charges, you should conduct one plea in mitigation for all charges at once. This will lead to a better outcome.

Our experienced lawyers can assist you in developing a plea strategy for all charges.
This offence is generally dealt with in the Magistrates’ Court.
 
What is the legal definition of Offence to Contravene Certain Conduct Conditions?
The Bail Act defines a ‘conduct condition’ as any bail condition imposed by a Magistrate under section 5AAA of the Bail Act.

Examples of Offence to Contravene Certain Conduct Conditions
  • Failing to attend Court when required to
  • Failing to sign in at a Police station
  • Residing at a different address than the one bailed to
  • Committing further offences while on bail
  • Failing to attend appointments
Elements of the offence
In order for this charge to be established, the prosecution must prove the following elements:

  • the accused was on bail with conduct conditions
  • the accused contravened the conduct conditions
  • the accused had no reasonable excuse for contravening the conduct conditions
Failure to prove any of the above elements beyond reasonable doubt will mean that the accused is not guilty of this offence

Legislation
The law for this charge can be found on section 30A of the Bail Act 1977.
 
Honest and reasonable mistake as to fact, factual error or a reasonable excuse (such as being in hospital) are available defences to this charge.

Questions in cases like this
  • Did you reside at the address you were bailed to?
  • Did you sign in at the Police station?
  • Did you attend Court on time?
If you have been charged with this offence, you should call us to speak with one of our experienced lawyers to discuss your options. Pleading guilty to this offence may have implications.
 

There is a maximum penalty of 30 penalty units (fine) or 3 months imprisonment for the Offence to Contravene Certain Conduct Conditions (s30A of Bail Act 1977).

Sentencing in the higher courts
There were 59 charges of Contravene a Conduct Condition of Bail section 30A(1) that were heard in the higher courts of Victoria from 1 July 2011 to 30 June 2016. Majority of these charges led to imprisonment (52.5). Other penalties imposed include Community Correction Order (23.7%), fine (13.6%), adjourned undertaking/discharge/dismissal (8.5%), and Youth Justice Centre order (1.7%).

Of the prison terms imposed, 74.2% were less than a year.1

Sentencing in the Magistrates’ Courts
In the Magistrates’ Courts of Victoria, a total of 4,396 cases (7,364 charges) of Contravene a Conduct Condition of Bail section 30A(1) were heard from 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2016. Most of these cases resulted in imprisonment (49.8%) followed by Community Correction Orders (27.7%). Other sentences imposed include fine (11.1%), adjourned undertaking/discharge/dismissal (6.8%), wholly suspended sentence (1.6%), partially suspended sentence (1.5%), Youth Justice Centre Order (1.2%), and other forms of sentencing (0.4%).

Majority of the prison terms imposed were less than 3 months (40.1%) while the longest term given was more than 36 months. The latter was however seldom imposed and was, in fact, applied in only 0.6% of the cases that resulted in imprisonment.

The highest financial penalty was between $3,000 and $4,000 and this was given to 1.6% of those who were fined (aggregate). The categories most frequently imposed were “$500 < $1,000” for aggregate (33.1%) and “Less than $500” for non-aggregate (11.3%).2

Please note that suspended sentences were abolished in Victoria for all offences committed on or after 1 September 2014.3


[1] SACStat Higher Courts – Bail Act 1977 (Vic) : s 30A(1) – contravene a conduct condition of bail < https://www.sentencingcouncil.vic.gov.au/sacstat/higher_courts/HC_9008_30A_1.html >
[2] SAC Statistics – Bail Act 1977 (Vic) : s 30A(1) – contravene a conduct condition of bail < https://www.sentencingcouncil.vic.gov.au/sacstat/magistrates_court/9008_30A_1.html >
[3] Suspended Sentence | The Sentencing Advisory Council < https://www.sentencingcouncil.vic.gov.au/about-sentencing/sentencing-options-for-adults/suspended-sentence >