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Young Person’s Court Process

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When a child is charged with a criminal offence, the police will submit a court attendance notice to the children's court. If the young person was granted bail, they must appear in court on the specified date mentioned in the notice. Typically, this court appearance occurs a few weeks after the charges were laid. However, if the young person was held by the police, the case will be quickly brought to court. During this hearing, they can request bail or plead guilty, resolving the charges immediately.

If they plead not guilty, the proceedings are adjourned for the police to prepare and present a 'brief of evidence.' After reviewing this evidence, if the young person maintains their not guilty plea, the court schedules an adjournment for a defended hearing.

If found not guilty during the hearing, the charges are dismissed. If found guilty, the Magistrate proceeds to impose a sentence. In certain cases, the Children’s Court may delay the matter to obtain reports or assess the defendant for programs before determining the appropriate sentence.

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