Periodic detention

The Commonwealth (Federal) courts have the power to impose a sentence of periodic detention pursuant to section 20AB of the Commonwealth Crimes Act. Periodic detention (which is also known as weekend detention) is a form of imprisonment.

Periodic detention involves incarceration within a periodic detention facility for two days each week for the length of the sentence orderd by the court.

Periodic detention can be served either on the weekend or mid week. The two-day period commences at 7.00 pm on the day of the week specified (usually Friday) and ends at 4.30 pm on the second day following the day so specified (usually Sunday).

Before a court imposes a sentence of periodic detention it must satisfy itself that no other penalty other than imprisonment is appropriate in the circumstances. If the court imposes a sentence of periodic detention it is likely to set an additional period after which an offender may be released on parole.

A periodic detention order cannot be longer than three years. If the court imposes two or more sentences of periodic detention then the combined periods cannot be more than three years.


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