Criminal law is a complicated topic that takes an expert to understand. Even things like threats can carry significant penalties if you are prosecuted, and it’s very important to make sure that you speak with a criminal lawyer to explore your options if you’re ever charged with a crime.
However, it can be hard to know when threats are actually an offence, and when they can be seen as a joke. I mean, we’ve all had thoughts along the lines of “I’d love to kill that person,” right?
Unfortunately, the law in Australia is quite clear, which means that you need to be careful about what you say and do. Ultimately, threats to kill can result in significant penalties, even if they aren’t meant seriously.
How Is A Threat To Kill Defined As An Offence?
Now, it’s important to note that the laws surrounding intimidating threats vary from state to state within Australia, but most are quite similar. The NSW law is quite simple and easy to understand, so I’m going to use it here as an example.
In New South Wales, the Crimes Act 1900 contains laws which govern offences including threats to kill. It basically outlines two situations which can lead to prosecution: