Defence Appeal

An offender has the right to appeal against their conviction (guilty verdict) and/or the length of their sentence. They have 28 days from the date they are sentenced to lodge an appeal but in certain circumstances they may be able to get an extension of time.

DPP Appeal

If the DPP believes that a sentence is too low, the DPP may appeal against the length of that sentence. The sentence must be considered by the DPP to be 'manifestly inadequate'. 

The DPP is not able to appeal against a not-guilty verdict.

Court of Appeal Hearings

Appeal hearings take place in the Court of Appeal, which is the highest court in Victoria.

The possible results of an appeal by the convicted offender against sentence are that:

  • the appeal is dismissed and the sentence stands
  • the appeal is dismissed and the sentence is increased
  • the appeal is allowed and the sentence is reduced.

The possible results of an appeal against conviction are that:

  • the appeal is dismissed and the conviction stands
  • the appeal is allowed. If this happens the judge can order a re-trial or, if there is a substantial miscarriage of justice, the judge may set aside the conviction.

If you are a victim in a matter where an appeal is lodged against a conviction or sentence, the OPP will let you know. You can also expect to be given information about the grounds of the appeal and the outcome. You will also be told of the date of any hearings, unless of course you have indicated that you do not wish to be contacted. If you are a witness, but not a victim, and would like to be told about any appeal, please let us know.

If a retrial is ordered, you will be told about this by the OPP solicitor or the VWAS worker.

They will confirm with you the date and time of the second trial. If you were a witness at the first trial, it is possible that you will be called to give evidence again. A second trial will not occur in the case of an acquittal.

If you have any questions about the appeals process you can ask the OPP solicitor or contact the Victims and Witness Assistance Service on 1800 641 927 or 9603 7425.

More about the Court Process