Youth Court and Young Offenders

Where a person under the age of 18 is charged with an offence the matter usually proceeds in the Youth Court rather than in the Magistrates, District or Supreme Court.

In certain circumstances a youth may be tried in an adult court, but only after the matter has first been to the Youth Court and prosecution made an application to have the youth tried as an adult.

Summary and Minor Indictable Offences are heard in the Youth Court by a Magistrate or Judge of the Youth Court.  Major Indictable charges in the youth court are heard by a Judge of the Youth Court.

The youth court is not open to the public and there are strict limitations about who may attend the court and what the media may publish about proceedings.