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Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice (Obstructing Justice)

Other Criminal Offences – WA

Welcome to the WA Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice (Obstructing Justice) article page. Everything you need to know about Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice (Obstructing Justice) according to WA Law.

What the Law states according to WA Law for Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice (Obstructing Justice)

According to WA Law for the charge of Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice (Obstructing Justice):

Section 143: Any person who attempts to obstruct, prevent, pervert, or defeat the course of justice, is guilty of a crime.

This law is often applied where people unlawfully attempt to affect the outcome of a trial or investigation, whether through threats, bribes or undue pressure.

The Maximum Penalty – Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice (Obstructing Justice)

According to WA Law for the charge of Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice (Obstructing Justice):

The maximum penalty is 7 years imprisonment.

What the Police must prove according to WA Law for Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice (Obstructing Justice)

(1) That the person attempted to obstruct, prevent, pervert or defeat the course of justice; and
(2) That the person’s attempt had the intention of obstructing, preventing, perverting or defeating the course of justice.

The Police do not have to prove that the course of justice was actually affected, nor that the actual intention of the party was to do so. The intention of the party must have been to do an act which would have the effect of defeating the course of justice.

Possible Defences under WA Law – Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice (Obstructing Justice)

(a) Identification (ie. the accused was not the person);
(b) There was no intention to pervert the course of justice; and
(c) Duress.

It is not a defence that the attempt could not have actually affected the course of justice if the intention was there.

In WA which court will hear the matter – Attempting to Pervert the Course of Justice (Obstructing Justice)

The matter would be heard in the District Court.

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