Some bullying may constitute a criminal offence, for example, if the bully threatens or assaults the victim or uses the internet to harass or cause offence to the victim. For the particular conduct to be considered criminal it must satisfy all the elements of a particular offence.
The age at which a person may be held responsible under criminal law in South Australia is 10 years. There is a separate justice system for young offenders under the age of 18 years in South Australia and police have a wide discretion in the way they respond, including the use of cautions or laying a charge. For more information about police powers to question, search and seize property, see Questioning, search and arrest.
Depending on the particular bullying conduct, potential offences under South Australian law may include:
The content of the Law Handbook is made available as a public service for information purposes only and should not be relied upon as a substitute for legal advice. See Disclaimer for details. For free and confidential legal advice in South Australia call 1300 366 424.