Commonwealth offences are those that come within the law-making responsibilities of the Australian federal government. Some examples are: child sex offences by Australians in foreign countries, cyber-crimes committed against Commonwealth government departments, drug importation and exportation, people smuggling, human trafficking, terrorism, fraud against the government (for example Centrelink, Medicare or the Australian Tax Office) and threats made against government officials. The laws regarding Commonwealth offences are set out in the Crimes Act 1914 and the Criminal Code Act 1995.
Federal or Commonwealth charges cover a range of alleged criminal behaviour, from minor Tax and Customs offences to serious crimes under the Criminal Code Act.
Commonwealth cases are generally prosecuted by the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions (CDPP) or the Australian Federal Police (AFP).
Because of the vast resources at the disposal of the CDPP and AFP, it is essential that you seek superior representation from criminal lawyers who are experienced in defending Commonwealth prosecutions.