There’s a natural desire for a defendant to request and want bail once arrested for a wide range of offences. Bail would allow a person to pay a certain amount to the court to secure their release until trial with the promise they will appear in court at their appropriate time. Under Section 10 of the Bail Act 1985, there’s the statutory presumption that a person is innocent until proven guilty. There are certain factors to consider before a bail application can be filed and bail can be granted.
Factors Determining Bail
Some of the most common factors considered when determining whether or not a person’s bail application will be granted include:
- Seriousness of the offence – when the crime’s especially violent, heinous or extraordinary, the prosecution will often ask for no bail. This could include situations such as murder, attempted murder or rape.
- Risk of the applicant absconding – this is based on whether the applicant is facing a lengthy prison term because of the offence itself, based on the applicant’s prior criminal history, or whether the applicant would renege on parole or a suspended sentence.
- Risk of the applicant reoffending – if an applicant is likely to reoffend whilst on bail, the application could be denied. The court will look at whether the person has a drug or alcohol problem or something along those lines that would cause them to commit more crimes.
- Risk of the applicant interfering with witnesses, evidence or police enquiries – the court will look into whether it is possible that the applicant would intimidate or harass witnesses, hinder the police investigation or destroy possible evidence.
- Safety of the Defendant – the court will determine whether the person would consider harming him/herself while out on bail. If it is likely, the person would remain imprisoned for safety reasons.
- Protecting the victim – the court will look into whether there’s a chance that the defendant would cause bodily harm or any type of abuse toward the victim in the case.
- Miscellaneous – the court could consider a realm of other possibilities such as prior criminal history, the strength of the case and past behaviors of the applicant.
Filing a bail application can be complicated and must be completed and filed in a particular way. It is best to have appropriate legal representation complete it. Call (03) 9021 2234 to find the right criminal defense lawyer in Melbourne.