This category comprises a wide range of acts, including the disruption
of the court process itself, acts which risk prejudicing or interfering with
particular legal proceedings (also known as sub judice contempt), and
acts or writing published calculated to bring a court or a judge of the
court into contempt, or to lower his authority (also known as
This category includes disobedience of court orders as well as breach
of undertakings given to the court.
(a) The first stage involves an application for leave (ie the court’s permission)
to apply for an order of committal for contempt of court, as required by the
Rules of Court. The application will be heard by the court without the
presence of the person who is alleged to have committed contempt of
court. The purpose of this stage is to allow the court to assess whether
there is sufficient basis to have the person alleged to have committed
contempt brought to court or whether the application should be dismissed
without disturbing him.
(b) If the court grants leave (or permission), then the second stage involves an
application for an order of committal for contempt of court, which is an
order of court setting out the court’s finding that contempt of court has
been committed and the punishment to be imposed. The application will
be served on the person who is alleged to have committed contempt of
court. A hearing date will then be fixed for the court to hear both parties
and to determine whether the person had committed contempt of court. If
the person is found guilty, the court may impose a term of imprisonment
and/or a fine.