At the first directions hearing

 

Venue, date and time

The first directions hearing will usually be on a Friday.  It will usually be held 6 weeks after the proceedings were commenced and the order was made.  It will be conducted by the List Judge, in a court in the Court’s building at 225 Macquarie Street, Sydney.  The location of the Court and the precise time of the day when the directions hearing will occur will be shown on the Court Lists posted on a notice board in the foyer of the building and on the Court’s website under Court Lists in the afternoon of the day before the directions hearing.  The Sydney Morning Herald may also (but does not always) publish the Court Lists on the morning of the date set for the directions hearing.

Defendant’s plea 

The defendant should advise the Court whether the defendant is in a position and is willing to enter a plea of not guilty or guilty to the offence charged in the order and, if so, enter the plea.

Time for notices of prosecution case and defence response   

The prosecutor and the defendant are to advise the Court of the time by which notice of the prosecution case is to be given under s 247E and notice of the defence response is to be given under s 247F of the Criminal Procedure Act.

Completed minute of proposed directions 

The prosecutor and the defendant are to hand to the Court an agreed or their own versions of a minute of the directions they propose the Court should make, including:

  • the time by which notice of the prosecution case and notice of the defence response under s 247E and s 247F of the Criminal Procedure Act should be given;
  • ordering a preliminary hearing under s 247G of the Criminal Procedure Act (if appropriate);
  • ordering a preliminary conference under s 247H of the Criminal Procedure Act (if appropriate);
  • ordering the prosecutor to give to the defendant notice in accordance with s 247J of the Criminal Procedure Act (if appropriate);
  • ordering the defendant to give to the prosecutor notice of the defence response to the prosecution’s notice in accordance with s 247K of the Criminal Procedure Act (if appropriate);
  • ordering the prosecutor to give to the defendant notice of the prosecution’s response to the defence response in accordance with s 247L of the Criminal Procedure Act (if appropriate); and
  • other directions for the efficient management and conduct of the proceedings.

Making and recording directions

The List Judge will make directions orally, including fixing times for various notices to be given and dates for any preliminary hearings or preliminary conferences that might be ordered as well as a date for the second directions hearing.  It is important that the parties record the directions the List Judge makes.  A written copy of the directions made is not usually sent to the parties.

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