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    Criminal lawyer explains how Jarryd Hayne was released from jail after successful appeal

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      jarryd hayne jail appeal

      Jarryd Hayne Freed from Jail After Appeal Win

      NRL star Jarryd Hayne has been released from jail after his sexual assault appeal was allowed and convictions overturned.

      This is the second successful appeal for the two-time Dally M winner. He has been through three trials to date.

      Hayne was found guilty of sexually assaulting a woman at her Newcastle following a District Court trial last year.

      The ruling means that the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) will now have to decide whether they want to proceed on a fourth trial.

      Jarryd Hayne Appeal

      Jarryd Hayne appeal was upheld on two of the three grounds argued.

      The first ground was that the verdicts were unreasonable and not supported by evidence at trial. This argument was rejected.

      However, the second ground – that the trial judge erred in ruling the complainant did not have to give evidence about a 2021 interaction with two people she messaged on the day of the alleged sexual assault in 2018 – was upheld.

      The court also found that a direction the judge gave the jury resulted in a miscarriage of justice.

      Text Messages

      A woman gave evidence that after 10pm on September 30 the complainant messaged her on Snapchat words to the effect of Hayne “went down on” her and “it was really rushed”, but did not say it was non-consensual.

      The complainant did not give police the woman’s name. However, the woman contacted Hayne’s lawyers.

      There were also messages between the complainant and a man in the hours before the incident with Hayne – in which she said that “[if] we aren’t going to keep talking, I’m going to say yes to Jarryd” visiting her – were only revealed when that man approached Hayne’s lawyers.

      The woman later told the man’s flatmate on the day of Hayne’s first appeal to, “tell [him] he just f—-d me with the appeal”, and told police that “if those messages get out I’m f—-d and he will get off”.

      It had been argued by the defence that the complainant’s concealment of text messages was “the same as lying or deception”. It was further submitted that the woman hid evidence on “a large scale”.

      Justice Rothman said, “the credibility of the complainant was the most important issue in the trial” and the judge should have allowed her to be cross-examined on this issue.

      Complainant’s ‘Lies’

      The third ground of appeal was that the trial judge, Graham Turnbull SC, referred to the defence submission that the complainant had lied.

      His Honour said that “[in] relation to lies, I’m going to give you a direction…(you) just want to be a bit careful” in assessing allegations such as those related to “deletions from the phone”, and said that they would want to consider whether that was “fairly put and fairly arises”.

      “It is not a consistent notion that you can just make that allegation without having given the opportunity to the person to answer whether or not, for example, they were mistaken, they were confused, they didn’t understand the position, and so forth,” the trial judge said.

      The Court also found that this was an error.

      The appeal was heard by Justice Anthony Meagher, Justice Stephen Rothman and Justice Deborah Sweeney, who were divided 2-1 on the decision.

      Justice Sweeney found that not only should the appeal be upheld but Mr Hayne should be acquitted. This was because it was, “not clear, to the requisite standard, that (the woman) did not consent to the two sexual acts … or, if she did not, that (Mr Hayne) knew that.”

      “On my own assessment of the quality and sufficiency of the evidence, I have a reasonable doubt that the applicant committed the offences charged…I am of the view there is a significant possibility that an innocent person has been convicted.”

      Justice Rothman did not go as far as to say Hayne should be acquitted but ordered a retrial.

      Sexual assault lawyers explain that the credibility of the complainant is often the central issue in these types of cases. Usually, consent will also be crucial in sexual offences. If you have been charged with an offence you can contact Astor Legal online, call us on (02) 7804 2823 or email

      Will there be a retrial?

      It is unlikely that Jarryd Hayne will face a retrial. This is because DPP Prosecution Guideline 1.8 requires the following factors to be considered in determining whether a retrial should occur:

      • the seriousness of the matter;
      • whether and to what extent the accused has spent time in custody;
      • the cost of a retrial to the community and to the accused;
      • the views of the victim and police in accordance with the principles of Chapter 5;
      • whether evidence is still available.

      Further, Justice Sweeney set out, “I am of the view that in the circumstances of the history of this matter, to put the applicant on trial for a fourth time would not be in the interests of justice”.

      In the appeal, Mr Hayne’s defence argued that he should be acquitted rather than face a fourth trial.

      In a statement, the DPP said it will consider the Court of Criminal Appeal judgement and refer to the DPP guidelines.

      Jarryd Hayne Trial

      This was the third Jarryd Hayne trial over the same incident and the second time he was found guilty.

      Mr Hayne claims the sexual encounter was entirely consensual, but the jury accepted the woman’s version of events that she repeatedly said “no” and “stop” and was left bleeding after he pulled her pants off.

      The 36-year-old has continued to maintain his innocence and quickly launched an appeal against his conviction in the NSW Supreme Court.

      You can read a comprehensive breakdown of the Jarryd Hayne trial here.

      Jarryd Hayne Jail

      Following the District Court sentencing, Jarryd Hayne was jailed. He had been sentenced to four years and nine months behind bars for the charges of sexual intercourse without consent.

      On Wednesday, he appeared via audiovisual link in the NSW Court of Criminal Appeal wearing a prison-issued green tracksuit.

      Following the appeal being upheld he made a successful bail application and was released from custody.

      An important consideration in granting bail was Justice Rothman’s finding that it was “unlikely” a new trial could commence before Mr Hayne’s non-parole period ended. Put another way, even if Hayne was found guilty again, if he remained in custody he would effectively have served more time in jail than any sentence to be imposed on him.

      He was required to forfeit a surety of $20,000 and ordered to be of good behaviour and not stalk, harass, assault or contact the complainant.

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