Engaging in Terrorism

Acts of terrorism are taken very seriously in the NSW judiciary system. Whether a specific event defined as terrorism eventuated or an individual simply was involved in the training of terrorist acts to potentially plan an even in the future, the person or persons involved are considered to be engaging in terrorist acts and therefore will be liable to punishment accordingly. In fact, according to the Attorney-General’s office, a person can be convicted of a terrorist offence where they were involved in the preparing or planning of the act yet did not commit the offence themselves. An individual is also liable to punishment in relation to terrorism even if the planned act did not eventuate. Such activities may be considered as engaging in terrorism which is a serious criminal offence as per division 101.1 of the Criminal Code.

The Criminal Code explicitly states:

  1. A person commits an offence if the person engages in a terrorist act.

Furthermore, the provision or receival of training in connection with terrorist acts is also considered a criminal offence, related to engagement in the crime. 101.2 of the Criminal Code states that:

  1. A person commits an offence if:
    1. The person provides or receives training; and
    2. The training is connected with the preparation for, the engagement of a person in, or assistance in a terrorist act; and
    3. The person mentioned in paragraph a knows the connection described in paragraph b
  1. A person commits an offence if:
    1. The person provides or receives training; and
    2. The training is connected with the preparation for, the engagement of a person in, or assistance in a terrorist act; and
    3. The person mentioned in paragraph a is reckless to the connection described in paragraph b
  1. A person commits an offence under this section even if:
    1. A terrorist act does not occur; or
    2. The training is not connected with the preparation for, the engagement of a person in, or assistance in a specific terrorist act; or
    3. The training is connected with preparation for, the engagement of a person in, or assistance in more than one terrorist act.

Evidently, the laws surrounding terrorism are complex. Should you or someone you know be facing charges of engaging in terrorism, do not hesitate to contact Benjamin Leonardo – The Defenders, to schedule a FREE and confidential consultation. 

PENALTIES

Acts of terrorism or simply engaging in acts of terrorism occur some of the most significant penalties in Australian Courts. If you’re facing charges relating to such offences and you are found guilty, you should not expect the Court to show any leniency. As per division 101.1 of the Criminal Code, the offence of engaging in a terrorist act attracts a maximum penalty of imprisonment for life.

Alternatively, if your engagement with terrorism is providing or receiving training connect with terrorist acts, the maximum penalty enforced is imprisonment for 25 years as stated in division 101.2 of the Criminal Code. For this sentence to be imposed, the prosecution must establish that you knowingly knew the connection between the training and the preparation or engagement in a terrorist act. If this intent and knowledge can not be effectively proven, you may be charged with the less serious offence found under division 101.2, section 2, whereby you were reckless to the connection between the activities. If this is the case, you will be liable to a maximum sentence of 15 years imprisonment.

Engaging in terrorism is not taken lightly in the judiciary system. If you, or someone you know is facing charges of engaging in a terrorist act, it is advised to seek legal representation immediately. At Benjamin Leonardo – The Defenders, we have 29 years of experience in criminal law where we have achieved a 90% success rates for a vast range of criminal offences.

Contact our criminal defence lawyers now for a FREE consultation.

GUILTY

In order to be found guilty of engaging in a terrorist act, the prosecution will need to establish beyond a reasonable doubt that you were engaged in a terrorist act or were potentially going to be engaging in a terrorist act as a result of training that was connected to terrorist acts. If the prosecution is able to successfully prove these facts beyond a reasonable doubt, it is likely that you will face any of the above penalties imposed by the Court.

If you tend to agree with these claims, you have the option to plead guilty, whereby the case will proceed to sentencing where one of the above penalties will be enforced. However, pleading guilty is often demonstrates remorse, and could result in the enforcement of less severe penalties. Our criminal defence lawyers may also be able to organise a plea bargain with the prosecution in return for a guilty plea. Our Sydney based fraud lawyers can best advise you on whether it is in your best interest to plead guilty and the penalties associated if you decide to do so.

Contact our Sydney criminal defence law firm now for a FREE first consultation.

NOT GUILTY

Alternatively, you have the option to plead not guilty to charges of engaging in a terrorist act. In this circumstance, the case will proceed to a trial in which the prosecution will aim prove without a reasonable doubt that you did commit offence as per division 1 of the Criminal Code. If the prosecution successfully substantiates the evidence the against you, the Court will enforce relevant the appropriate penalty which is likely to be more severe than if you had pleaded guilty on your own terms.

However, at Benjamin Leonardo – The Defenders, we are dedicated to achieving the best possible outcome for our clients. In order to avoid the significant penalties associated with the crime of engaging in a terrorist act, our criminal defence lawyers will challenge the allegations made against by applying an appropriate legal defence. We will also thoroughly cross-examine any evidence put forth by the prosecution to determine the reliability and credibility of the sources. If our lawyers are successfully able to negate the allegations against you through these methods, you will be found not guilty of the crime and will not be penalised. It is important to remain aware that the most appropriate legal defence may not necessarily completely defend the claim, rather it provides a partial defence. This means you will be acquitted of the charge you’re currently facing, however will be liable to punishment by an alternative verdict. Typically, the penalties associated with this are less severe than the current charge and is therefore a successful outcome in comparison to facing the maximum penalty of life in gaol.

THE DEFENCE

If you are pleading not guilty to the charges of engaging in a terrorist act, our criminal defence lawyers can argue the following defences:

Duress: Involves the use of unlawful pressure to encourage an individual to commit a criminal act, which they would not usually participate in had a threat not been present. This coercion can take form of harmful threats such as death or bodily harm in which the accused believes that if they do not participate in the activity it is likely the threat will be played out.

Necessity: The defence of necessity can be argued in situations where it is found that the accused was in imminent danger by either human or natural forces. In order for the Court to deem that the accused’s actions were justifiable as a means of necessity, our criminal defence lawyers will need to establish that activity was only undertaken in order to avoid consequences that were deemed as “irreparable evil”. Our Sydney based criminal lawyers may also be able to determine that the criminal offence was committed by the act of necessity if our client holistically believes that they were in a situation of “imminent peril” and that they had no other alternatives to avoid the impending threat.

Self Defence: Can be argued in situations where the accused has participated in the criminal act in order to protect their property, themselves or another person from an unjust aggressor. It may be found that in the circumstances leading up to the crime of engaging with terrorism activities, that the offender was actually acting in accordance with protecting themselves, other individuals or their property.

WHICH COURT?

Due to the very serious nature of the offence, an indictment for engaging in terrorism will be heard in the District Court or Supreme Court. As a Sydney based criminal law firm with extensive experience in representing clients throughout various Courts in NSW including the Supreme Court, clients can be confident that our team has the ability to effectively handle your case.

If you or someone you know is facing charges of engaging in terrorist acts, call our expert team now for a FREE consultation.