Double Jeopardy

Brisbane Lawyers

Aitken Whyte Lawyers Brisbane - Criminal Defence Lawyers And Solicitors for Brisbane, Queensland

Double Jeopardy

S17 of the criminal code provides a defence from criminal responsibility, commonly known as double jeopardy. It is a defence to a charge of any offence if the accused person can show that where the person has previously been convicted or acquitted on indictment that:

  • They could have been convicted on that indictment of the offence with which the person is now charged; or
  • That the offence upon which the person was convicted or acquitted was one on which the person might be convicted upon the indictment or complaint on which he or she is now charged.

There is an exception to this section under s678B and s678C. Under s678B the court may order a retrial for an acquitted person to be retried for the offence of murder if it is satisfied that there is both fresh and compelling evidence against the acquitted person and in all circumstances it is in the interest of justice for that order to be made.  Under s678C the court may order an acquitted person to be retried for a 25 year offence if satisfied that the acquittal is a tainted acquittal and in all circumstances it is in the interests of justice.

In R v Viers [1983] 2 Qd R 1, the court ordered a permanent stay of proceedings where an attempt by the prosecution to charge a person on indictment with possession of cannabis in respect of which he had been previously summarily convicted constituted an example of double jeopardy.

Office Location and Contact Details

Aitken Whyte Lawyers Brisbane
2/414 Upper Roma Street
Brisbane QLD 4000
Ph: 07 3229 4459
Fax: +617 3211 9311