Sentencing

Comparative Sentencing Tables, Letters of Recognition Protocols & Section 32 Offences

Section 32 Offences

As of 6 March 2017 the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (ODPP) will only consent to a pending charge or charges being dealt with by a superior court pursuant to section 32 of the Sentencing Act 1995 if it is:

  1. An indictable charge within the meaning of section 3 of the Criminal Procedure Act 2004; or

  2. A charge of a simple offence which is connected to an indictable charge on the indictment which is to be dealt with by the superior court.

For the purposes of assessing the connection of the simple offence to the indictable charge, the test set out in Schedule 1, Division 2, Clause 7(3) of the Criminal Procedure Act 2004 will be applied.

Further information in relation to the approach to be taken in the future by the ODPP in relation to requests made by accused people to superior courts pursuant to section 32 of the Sentencing Act 1995 is set out in the attached Notice.

Section 32 Notices (PDF, 765.91KB) 

Letters of Recognition

The ODPP and the WA Police Force have settled a joint protocol regarding the issuing and handling of Letters of Recognition (also known as Letters of Comfort or Letters of Support), which are provided in circumstances where an offender has provided information that has assisted the WA Police Force to the extent that it warrants the provision of a Letter of Recognition.

The ODPP and the Law Society of Western Australia have settled a joint protocol regarding the circumstances in which a Letter of Recognition will be made available to Defence Counsel by the ODPP.

Joint Protocol between the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions and the Law Society of Western Australia regarding circumstances in which Letters of Recognition will be made available to Defence Counsel (PDF, 86.36KB)

Joint Protocol between the Director of Public Prosecutions and Western Australia Police regarding issuing and handling of Letters of Recognition (PDF, 66.69KB)

Comparative Sentencing Tables

The Comparative Sentencing Tables are prepared by the ODPP for use by State prosecutors in the Court of Appeal and at sentencing hearings. The Comparative Sentencing Tables outline decisions of appeal hearings that consider the sentences imposed for various criminal offences. The Tables are published to assist legal practitioners and members of the public. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of the summaries the Tables are not prepared as a substitute for reading the decisions of the appeal hearings that are published on the website of the Supreme Court of WA.

Comparative sentencing tables are updated regularly. Due to the growing number of cases recorded in the tables they are separated into three categories:

  • Decisions delivered prior to 1 January 2014 ;

  • Decisions delivered from 1 January 2014 – 31 December 2020; and

  • Decisions delivered from 1 January 2021.

For decisions prior to 1 January 2021 please refer to the webpages ‘Sentencing: Prior to 1 January 2014’ and 'Sentencing: From 1 January 2014 – 31 December 2020'.

Decisions from 1 January 2021 are listed below.

Decisions from 1 January 2021

s 6(1)(a) Misuse of Drugs Act Possess MDMA (ecstasy) with intent to sell or supply
s 6(1)(a) Misuse of Drugs Act Possess methylamphetamine with intent to sell or supply
s 6(1)(a) Misuse of Drugs Act Possess methylamphetamine with intent to sell or supply (trafficable quantity)
s 6(1)(a) Misuse of Drugs Act Possess prohibited drugs with intent to sell or supply (arranged by weight)
ss 6(1), 7(1) and 7(2) Misuse of Drugs Act Possess and Cultivate cannabis with intent to sell or supply
s 68 Criminal Code Armed with an offensive weapon likely to cause fear
ss 143 and 135 Criminal Code Attempt to pervert course of justice and Conspire to defeat justice
s 304 Criminal Code Acts or omissions causing bodily harm or danger
s 317(1) Criminal Code Assault occasioning bodily harm
ss 320(4), 321(4), 322(5) and 329(4) Criminal Code Indecent dealing with child
ss 323 and 324 Criminal Code Indecent Assault and Agg Indecent Assault
ss 325 and 326 Criminal Code Sexual penetration without consent and Aggravated sexual penetration without consent (adult victims)
s 392 and 393 Criminal Code Armed robbery (committed on smaller establishments)
s 401 Criminal Code Aggravated burglary (residential properties)
s 401 Criminal Code Aggravated burglary (commercial premises)
ss 444 and 445A Criminal Code and s 32(2) Bush Fires Act Arson, Breach of duty by person in control of ignition source or fire and Light fire likely to injure
Page reviewed 19 July 2021