Class 5: criminal proceedings                


Proceedings in Class 5 involve summary criminal enforcement proceedings, usually by government authorities prosecuting offences against planning or environmental laws.


Class 5 prosecutions are heard by a judge without a jury.


Practice and procedure in Class 5 matters can be found in Practice Note Class 5 proceedings.




Fast facts                


In 2017, Class 5 prosecutions were 6% of the Court's finalised caseload.

Of the new prosecutions commenced in 2017: 

28% were by the Environment Protection Authority or Office of Environment and Heritage

36% were by local councils

35% were by the Department of Planning and Environment. 

Of the prosecutions determined by the Court in 2017:

70% involved  a guilty plea

25% involved a not guilty plea

Of the prosecutions determined by the Court in 2017:

83% resulted in a conviction

17% resulted in an acquittal

The penalties imposed included fines, orders to pay clean up or investigation costs, publication orders and environmental service orders. Fines ranged from $2,800 to $720,000.

In 2017, 73% of Class 5 prosecutions were finalised within 16 months of commencement. The median completion time was 395 days.

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