Criminal Offences Relating to Communication Technology
In Australia, cybercrime relates to criminal activity where computers or other information communications technologies are an integral part of the offence. Cyber crime is increasingly becoming the subject of matters that are prosecuted in the Magistrates Court and in the District Court of Western Australia.
In more recent times, cybercrime has been operating on a significant scale and has become an increasingly important issue for the global community.
Under our federal legislation, there are specific computer offences relating to the unauthorised access and modification of data and the impairment of electronic communications. There are also offences relating to the use of a carriage service (such as a mobile phone, social media site or other multi-media communication devices) to menace, harass or cause offence.
Under our WA legislation, prosecutions are commonly brought for procuring a child under the age of 16 years to engage in sexual activity or exposing a child under the age of 16 years to any indecent matter. Disturbingly, the online distribution of child exploitation material is also becoming a very prevalent form of offending.
There are also offences involving that of fraud, theft, stalking, making threats to kill and making threats to commit a sexual assault, all of which can be committed online or by using a carriage service.
Recent State Legislation
Early this year, legislation was enacted making it an offence to distribute an image of a person engaged in a private act, or an intimate image of that person without the consent of the person appearing in the image. The person providing the consent must be 16 years or older.
The aim of this legislation is to safeguard against people being sexually exploited and also to protect persons from what is now commonly referred to as “revenge porn”.
In his Second Reading speech the Western Australian Attorney General said:
“The non- consensual distribution of intimate images is a degrading and dehumanising practice that violates personal privacy and dignity. It is a form of abuse, and should be labelled as such.”
Law Enforcement Agencies Are at Work
The Commonwealth and WA Police have various dedicated squads which specialise in offences that occur over the internet, mobile phone and other multimedia devices.
Contact The Law Offices of Andrew Williams
Offences involving cybercrime are taken very seriously by the courts and can result in serious penalties, including imprisonment, and admission to the sex offenders register.
If you are being investigated for activities conducted over the internet, it’s in your best interests to attain prompt legal advice from an experienced criminal lawyer. Call Andrew Williams on 08 9278 2575 or enquire online today.