If a court considers that there are good reasons, it may order the release of a defendant on the defendant's entering into a promise (recognisance or bond) to be of good behaviour for such period as the court thinks fit, usually between six months and three years [see Criminal Law (Sentencing) Act 1988 (SA) ss 39 and 40]. This can occur with or without a criminal conviction. Payment of a sum of money may be specified in the event of non compliance and guarantors may be required to ensure compliance [see s 41].
A court may impose conditions within the bond [see s 42(1)] such as:
- being under the supervision of a community corrections officer
- undergoing medical, psychological or psychiatric treatment
- live at a particular address or not to live at a particular address
- perform community service work
- abstinence from drugs or alcohol
- payment of compensation
The Court has power to vary or discharge a bond. The application is made either by the probationer or the Minister for Correctional Services [see s 44]. The Court cannot extend the period within which the community service is to be performed by more than six months [see s 44 (1b)] The Minister may also waive the obligations of probationers to comply with any conditions requiring supervision if the Minister for Correctional Services is satisfied that it is no longer necessary for there to be supervision and it is not in the best interest of the probationer to remain under supervision [see s 44(2)]. The Court may also by order discharge the bond [see s 44(3)].
When a person does not comply with a condition of a bond, then they can be enforcement proceedings lodged against them [see s 57]. Usually this occurs when someone commits a further offence, have not completed community service work or have not complied with supervision by a community corrections officer. When this occurs the Court can require payment of the monetary sum attached to the bond, order payment of the guarantee, convict and sentence the person, allow further time to complete community service work, or if the breach is trivial or there is proper grounds for excusing it, the Court may not do anything [see s 58].
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