Charges: Breach of violence restraining order (‘VRO’) x 1.
Appeal type: Appeal against conviction.
Facts: There was a final VRO in place protecting the applicant’s partner. The applicant’s partner applied for a variation of that order. The applicant was not served with notice of the application to vary the VRO (). The Magistrate granted the application to vary the VRO even though the appellant was not present (). The appellant pleaded guilty to breaching the VRO ().
Issues: Whether the appellant’s conviction upon his own plea was a miscarriage of justice.
Decision and Reasoning: The appeal was allowed (). The variation to the restraining order was a nullity (, ). It was an essential condition of the jurisdiction to hear the application to vary the VRO under s 48(2) of the Restraining Orders Act 1997 (WA) that the Court be satisfied that the appellant was served with the summons (). Since the Court was not so satisfied, the VRO had no legal force. It was a miscarriage of justice for the appellant to be convicted of breaching the order ().