Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm

Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm (AOABH) is found under s59 of the Crimes Act 1900.

The maximum penalty is 5 years imprisonment.

Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily harm is a more serious charge then a charge of common assault.

A conviction for offences of this type by the courts even for first time offenders is not uncommon or even imprisonment.

We have over 20 years of experience and have successfully defended clients in the courts.  We have been able to have charges reduced or dismissed.

We have been able upon a plea of guilty to obtain a Section 10 – non conviction for clients where the circumstances were appropriate.

The police do not have to prove that you intended to cause an Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm to a victim.  They only need to prove that the accused intentionally or recklessly assaulted the victim and that Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm was occasioned as a result.

Typical injures include scratches and bruises for the charge of Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm.  The common legal definition for the injury inflicted on the victim being:

‘It need not be permanent, but must be more then merely transient or trifling – it is something less then grievous bodily harm, which requires a really serious physical injury, and wounding which requires breaking of the skin…”

The court views offences of this type very seriously.  There are three factors which a court will use to asses the objective seriousness of Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm:-

  1. The extent and nature of the injuries to the victim;
  2. The degree of the violence; and
  3. The mental element of the offence.

Extent and nature of the injuries

Which offences involving Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily harm the nature of the injury caused to the victim will to a significant degree determine the seriousness of the offence and the appropriate sentence.

In general terms the worse the injury is the more serious the offence will be treated by the courts.

An offence may be characterised as falling close to the worse of its kind by reason of the injuries inflicted upon the victim.

Degree of Violence

The degree of violence or ferocity of the attack is a material consideration on sentence for Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm (AOABH).  This is so even if the consequences of the attack on the victim is minimal.

Intention/Mental Element

The intention which the offender inflicts harm on the victim is an important consideration by the court when it comes to sentencing.

Obtain Legal Advice

With over 20 years experience and having represented many clients facing charges for Assault Occasioning Actual Bodily Harm we have the record of obtaining  excellent outcomes for our clients.

We have been able to have clients not convicted by the courts.

We have also been able to successfully negotiate with the prosecution lesser charges which have enabled us to obtain Section 10 – non conviction outcomes for our clients on occasions.

Every case has to be assessed on its own merits and circumstances.  We take the time to properly assess and review your matter to achieve the outcome for you.

The importance of obtaining sound legal advice and seeing one of our experienced criminal lawyers can mean the difference between a potential term of imprisonment or having the matter dealt with appropriately by the court.

We do provide the first appointment for free.