Concealing a serious indictable offence

Concealing A Serious Indictable Offence

In New South Wales you can face serious criminal charges if you have information about a serious crime, and don’t pass this information onto authorities.

A second man has been charged over the death of 17-year old Ned Gronow in Casino earlier this year.

An 18-year old will face Lismore Local Court next month, charged with concealing a serious indictable offence. A person can be charged with this offence if they know or believe  that a serious indictable offence has been committed by another person, and they know or believe they have information which may help police investigations.

A ‘serious indictable offence’ is an offence dealt with in the District Court or Supreme Court that is punishable by a term of five years imprisonment or more.

Concealing serious indictable offence

Section 316 of the NSW Crimes ACt 1900, states that

(1) An adult–

(a) who knows or believes that a serious indictable offence has been committed by another person, and

(b) who knows or believes that he or she has information that might be of material assistance in securing the apprehension of the offender or the prosecution or conviction of the offender for that offence, and

(c) who fails without reasonable excuse to bring that information to the attention of a member of the NSW Police Force or other appropriate authority,

is guilty of an offence. The maximum penalty is:

(a) 2 years – if the maximum penalty for the serious indictable offence is not more than 10 years imprisonment, or

(b) 3 years – if the maximum penalty for the serious indictable offence is more than 10 years imprisonment but not more than 20 years imprisonment, or

(c) 5 years – if the maximum penalty for the serious indictable offence is more than 20 years imprisonment.

Murders affect the small community

An 18-year-old youth from Casino has already been charged with Ned Gronow’s murder. He was charged in the immediate hours following the stabbing in June this year. The maximum penalty for murder in New South Wales is life imprisonment, meaning the rest of your life, until death, in prison. However, this is the maximum penalty and it is only handed down in the most serious cases, although murder does have a standard non-parole period of 20 years which means that any person convicted of murder will generally spend at least 20 years in prison.

After the stabbing deaths of Ned Gronow and Lachlan Andrews who was killed in a separate incident only weeks earlier, NSW Police feared that there might be a “kill list” circulating in the small regional town of Casino. Lachlan Andrews was stabbed during a brawl outside KFC – he died later in hospital. Another teenager Harrison Hone was seriously injured in the same brawl.

Educating youths via new anti-violence campaign

Detectives launched Strike Force Linford to investigate whether the stabbings of Lachlan Andrews and Ned Gronow were connected, but have since said they are “not believed to be related” – just both tragic incidents which have rocked the small community this year.

In August this year NSW Police announced it would be launching an anti-violence campaign throughout secondary schools across the state in a bid to stamp out youth violence. A 12-minute video is expected to be shown in all public secondary schools by the end of this year to students in grades seven to 10.



This post is informative only. It is not legal advice. If you have a specific legal matter you’d like to discuss, please contact us.

We service NSW, particularly the area from Coffs Harbour to Byron BayBallina, Mullumbimby and Tweed Heads regions on the Far North NSW Coast.

To learn more about The Local Court Lawyers, see our What We Do page.

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