Both the prosecutor and the offender have the right to lodge an appeal. This means a higher court will look at the case again.
The court victim advisor will contact you if there's going to be an appeal. You won't have to give evidence at the appeal, but you can go to the hearing if you want to.
Who can lodge an appeal?
The offender may lodge an appeal against being found guilty or against the sentence. Sometimes, they may appeal against the court’s refusal to grant bail or name suppression.
The prosecutor can appeal against the sentence if they think it wasn't adequate for the crime or not legally correct. The prosecutor cannot appeal against an acquittal (this is when the court throws out the charges against the offender).
As an individual, you cannot lodge an appeal against the sentence or an acquittal.
What happens if the court upholds the appeal
If the court upholds the appeal it can make make a number of decisions, like:
- changing the sentence given to the offender
- ordering a re-trial, where you and all the other witnesses give evidence again
- acquitting the offender, which means they're free to go and the charges are thrown out.
If the offender is found guilty and sentenced you might be able to go on the Victim Notification Register. Talk to your court victim advisor or officer in charge about this.