FAQ Victims & Witnesses
Do you have a question about the NSW ODPP? We cannot provide legal advice and do not discuss individual cases, but will consider inquiries about the criminal justice system and the process of matters through the court.
The ODPP seeks to provide information to victims about the trial process and their role as a witness as soon as possible after taking over a matter and to keep victims advised of the progress of the prosecution (e.g. changes to charges, court dates and court results).
No. They are trained in social work, psychology and counselling and specialise is victim liaison and support. They are able to assist you in understanding the prosecution process and to support you throughout the legal process. They cannot act as a lawyer or provide you with legal advice but they can assist with preparing for court.
Yes. If the case you are involved in is currently before the courts the ODPP lawyer or Police Officer in Charge of the case can provide you with a copy of your statement. If the case has finished you will need to request a copy of your statement and provide the name of the accused person and the ODPP CASES reference if possible. You should send your request to:
Locked Bag A8, Sydney South, NSW, 1232
Generally you will not be entitled to any statements made by other witnesses or a complete copy of the brief of evidence. If you are a victim of a crime, we can provide you with copies of any medical statements relating to you and the crime.
You must comply with that subpoena and attend court as directed. Often cases will not commence at the time indicated on the subpoena because the courts usually list more than one trial at time. We understand it may be inconvenient for you to wait at court unnecessarily, but unfortunately the ODPP and Police will often not know until the day the case is due to commence when you will be required to give evidence. To minimise the inconvenience the ODPP lawyer or Police Officer will tell you as soon as possible when you need to come to court. Depending on the length of the case this may be a day, week or month after the date shown on the subpoena. It is very important that you speak with the ODPP lawyer, WAS officer or Police Officer when you receive the subpoena so they can advise when you are likely to be required to give evidence so you can make arrangements to be available.
You must comply with the subpoena. In some circumstances you may be able to claim “privilege” over the documents, but the ODPP cannot provide you with legal adviceabout this and you will need to consult your own lawyer. If the documents requested by the subpoena are counselling notes or other professional records that were made in connection with a sexual assault, Legal Aid NSW provides a free advice service to victims and witnesses (email: firstname.lastname@example.org) . The ODPP lawyer or WAS Officer can assist you with a referral to this service.
The ODPP provides witness expenses to all civilian witnesses. The ODPP can provide expenses to witnesses before the case is due to start to assist them in travelling to court and paying for accommodation. You should contact the ODPP lawyer or WAS officer as soon as possible to ensure that witness expenses are provided to you in time and any air tickets are booked or other travel arrangements are made for you. If you require any other assistance with getting to court or while at court, you need to liaise with the ODPP lawyer or WAS Officer.