Assault is considered a serious crime in Australia because it is an act of violence against an individual. The type of assault you are charged with will depend on the act itself, the severity of the injury sustained and other circumstances including intent and recklessness.

The severity of the punishment of Assault will depend on the offence, the circumstances surrounding the act and circumstances of the offender. In all criminal cases, the Prosecution first must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you have committed the offence you are charged with.

What is assault?

Assault is the intentional or reckless infliction or threat of infliction of unlawful physical contact.

Types of Assault:


This offence can arise from a situation where there is a threat of immediate unlawful physical contact and applies even in cases where there was no injury sustained or where the injuries are minor. Examples include hitting or striking a person and carry a maximum penalty of two years imprisonment.


This offence is an aggravated assault which arises in situations where there was an actual injury sustained from the assault. Meaning that you either intentionally or recklessly applied unlawful physical force onto another person which caused an injury that is more serious affecting the comfort or health of the victim. This offence carries a maximum penalty of five years imprisonment.


This offence occurs where the assault causes an injury that breaks then the second layer of skin whether this was done intentionally or recklessly. The maximum sentence for this offence is imprisonment for 25 years.


This offence occurs when a person has sexual intercourse with an anothern person without their consent and can also include situations where coercion is used to force another person to engage in sexual activities. This offence carries a maximum penalty of 14 years imprisonment, however, can lead to a longer term of imprisonment if circumstances of aggravation apply. These circumstances can include that the victim was under 16 years old or actual bodily harm was inflicted or the act was done in the company of other people.

Possible Penalties:

Depending on the type of offence, the circumstances surrounding the offence and the offender the possible penalties include:

*Section 10(1)(a) & s10(1)(c)
*Conditional release Order (CRO) without conviction
*Section 10A
*Conditional release Order (CRO) with conviction
*Community Correction Order (CCO)
*Deferral of sentence
*Intensive Corrections Order (ICO) with a home detention condition available
*Full-time Imprisonment.

It is important to note that any type of assault carries a term of imprisonment as a possible sentence, so it is important to obtain legal advice before you attend Court. At Pannu lawyers, we recognize the significance of maintaining your liberty for life, contact us now to speak to one of our criminal lawyers on (02) 9920 1787 to see how
we can help you defend your case.

Pannu Lawyers are conveniently located in Blacktown and extensively practice Family Law, Criminal Law, Commercial Law and Conveyancing.

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