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Malicious Communications Offences

Malicious communications offences are treated very seriously and can have life-changing consequences for anyone facing an accusation. Having expert legal advice from a team that specialises in these types of offences is key.


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If you believe your case is likely to have serious consequences for you now, or in the future and you have the means to pay for this service

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At JD Spicer Zeb, our criminal defence solicitors have the knowledge and experience to effectively handle all types of cases related to malicious communications law. When instructed, we will be well placed to advise you on your situation, take you through the steps that need to be taken to build your defence, and to represent you during any court proceedings that may follow.

Our diligent approach has meant that we have been able to consistently achieve the best possible outcomes for all of our clients, whether this be to help them avoid charges, to have charges dropped, or to secure not guilty verdicts in court. In cases where avoiding conviction is not possible, we will take every available measure to make sure that any malicious communications sentences are minimised as far as possible.

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Why choose JD Spicer Zeb?

  • 1000's of Cases Dropped
  • 24/7 Emergency Phonelines
  • 100's of Years Combined Experience
  • Google Reviews Read all Reviews

Recent Cases

There is limited recourse for you if you are falsely accused. Click a selection of the cases we have covered. The best thing you can do is to instruct an excellent solicitor from the outset.

Read more cases

If you are arrested for malicious communications, you will have the option of working with a duty solicitor. However, we strongly believe that our team’s experience and skills will make the all-important difference when it comes to your prospects of achieving a positive outcome.

No matter what situation you may be facing, we always strongly advise that you do not speak to the police without a solicitor being present.

Our malicious communications solicitors provide:

  • 24/7 legal support in person and over the phone, 365 days a year
  • Representation anywhere in England or Wales
  • Accredited Police Station Representatives to support you during a police interview

Clear, effective legal advice in any language (see our languages spoken)

How can we help?

Common questions

We always work with the most experienced and best leading UK barristers, KCs (Kings Counsel). We cover all criminal cases 24/7 at the police station and court. Offices in London, Birmingham, and Manchester cover cases across England and Wales. We can offer Legal Aid and affordable Private fee agreements. We can see you the same day, including virtually. Our Senior Partners supervise all of our cases.

How quickly do you respond?

We respond quickly even during out of hours. We do not get our work by paying for online adverts but based on the fact that few criminal law firms can match our 45 years of experience. Most of our cases are still from word-of-mouth recommendations from satisfied clients. We are called daily by dissatisfied clients from firms with less experience than us. We respond very quickly to new enquiries. We know what clients seek and so we update clients rapidly.

Can you get cases dropped?

Yes, read about the recent cases we've helped our clients with here.

We always keep you updated and give straightforward advice. We will get cases dropped early where the case is weak or should not be prosecuted. We will be upfront with you about where you can benefit from a good result with an early guilty plea, such as a discount on your sentence. As we work on cases across all levels with clients from all walks of life, we are excellent at giving clear, spot-on advice. As an established firm, we can allocate a whole team to your case often at short notice to secure evidence to minimise the damage to you. 

Have you won any awards?


"JD Spicer Zeb demonstrated a clear commitment to client service through their work with vulnerable and diverse individuals in what can be severely traumatic circumstances".

Do you offer free consultations?

Where it is possible, we aim to provide an initial consultation to you. If we can speak to you, we can if required inform you about  –

  • Whether we can take the case on and our relevant experience.
  • Public and private funding benefits.
  • Assistance in applying for legal aid where we are likely to accept instructions.
  • An outline of options in police interview only. We will not advise you on which option to adopt.
  • Providing our free written guide explaining the police station process.
  • The gravity of routine and day-to-day offences you face.
  • Consequences of not attending the court or police station.
  • Consequences of interfering with any witnesses.
  • Retaining any evidence in support of your case.
  • If possible an outline of the elements of the offence that the police or CPS must prove.
  • This consultation will normally be by telephone or email and will only be for as long as we deem necessary to establish if we can act for you. If we cannot usefully give you any advice in this manner then we will not continue with the consultation. We will not discuss the case in depth for you to be able to decide on your plea or any significant aspect of the case, as this cannot be undertaken informally.
  • Referring you, if possible, to other firms for matters out of our specialism or if we cannot help.

Consultations do not apply to the following cases –

  • If we do not intend to take the case on.
  • Road Traffic cases, drink driving, drug driving, driving bans, speeding, no insurance, mobile phone use, points etc.
  • In all cases where we do not have the capacity to take your case or the availability of suitably qualified staff to provide an initial free consultation. This is applicable in all cases but especially where a more senior lawyer is required because of your personal needs or the complexity of the case.
  • Harassment/stalking/ coercive behaviour/malicious communications or road traffic cases and most sensitive cases. These cases are often too complicated to assess in short consultations.
  • The locations concerned may be too distant to represent you adequately or it may not be cost-effective for you or us.
  • The case is too complicated to assess or raises various charges or facts, complexity, or history to be considered informally or in a short consultation.
  • In most Legal aid transfers where legal aid is granted to another firm except in very grave cases, we may assess the case and merits for a transfer.
  • If your relationship has broken down with your existing solicitor or several solicitors.
  • If you have been released under investigation and have already had a police station attendance. 
  • If you hold legal aid with another firm and seek a second opinion.
  • If you are calling on behalf of the client as a friend or family member unless you have full authority and full facts.
  • To businesses.
  • Advising whether you were given good advice by your other solicitor.
  • Whether to decide to plead guilty or not guilty.
  • Whether you have an arguable defence in law or factually complicated defences.
  • Any advice you have had after your first court appearance.
  • Any advice on appeal on conviction or sentence.
  • If we feel we are unable to communicate with you.
  • If we are likely to be conflicted or breach our professional rules.

Speak to our malicious communication solicitors today

For a free initial consultation on your legal position and the available options, contact our local offices in LondonBirmingham or Manchester.

For urgent advice at any time of day or night regarding a malicious communications offence please call our Emergency Number 07836 577 556.

Our expertise with malicious communications offences

At JD Spicer Zeb, our malicious communications solicitors can offer you:

  • The support of a criminal defence team with over 45 years of experience, including for malicious communications charges related to the Malicious Communications Act 1988 and Communications Act 2003.
  • The skills needed to cover every possible detail that could be involved in a malicious communications offence so you can be sure you have the most comprehensive defence.
  • Straightforward advice in plain English so you understand exactly what steps are being taken.
  • A team that are always in your corner and are ready to fight for your fair treatment.
  • An excellent track record of achieving positive outcomes for our clients under even the most difficult circumstances.
  • Established relationships with leading criminal defence barristers across the country.
  • Close personal support through every stage of criminal proceedings.
  • Law Society accreditation for Criminal Litigation reflecting our specialist expertise
  • Lexcel accreditation for the high standards of our legal practice

Pre-charge bail

If you are interviewed under caution for malicious communications offences, you may subsequently be released on pre-charge bail. Pre-charge bail (also simply referred to as being released on bail) is often granted in cases where the police need more time to conduct their investigation.

After you are released on pre-charge bail, you will usually be subjected to various bail conditions, such as not being able to visit certain places, contact certain people and/or being required to attend the police station on a certain day.

To find out more in relation to pre-charge bail, please use the links provided below:

Fees and Funding

We are always clear and transparent when it comes to the costs involved in a malicious communications case.

Legal aid may be available in some cases and will depend on the seriousness of the case, your current financial situation and whether it justifies the grant of public funding.

For clients that do not qualify for legal aid, the alternative option will be to fund a case privately.

To find out more about the way we handle fees (both legal aid public funding and private fees), please use the links provided below:

Related offences

Please note that our expert solicitors also provide advice and support with related matters, including:

Related cases

Common questions about malicious communications offences

What is malicious communications?

Malicious communications refers to any form of communication which is deemed to be grossly offensive or indecent.

Malicious communications offences can be committed under either the Malicious Communications Act 1988 or the Communications Act 2003.

Under the Malicious Communications Act 1988, a person commits an offence if he sends a communication which is indecent or grossly offensive in order to cause distress or anxiety.

The Online Safety Act 2023 repealed certain provisions of the Malicious Communications Act 1988. Previously, communications were considered to be malicious if they conveyed:

  • A threat
  • Information that is false and is known to be so by the sender

Following these repeals, two new offences, false communications and threatening communications, have been created under the Online Safety Act 2023. Thus, this conduct is no longer criminalised under the Malicious Communications Act 1988.

Under the Communications Act 2003, a person commits an offence if he sends or causes to be sent a communication that is grossly offensive or of an indecent, obscene or menacing character. A person also commits an offence if he sends or causes to be sent a communication he knows to be false in order to cause annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety. Malicious communications can be sent in breakdowns in relationships, friendships, online communications electronically, orally or by letter. We have also experience of cases with breakdowns between business or work colleagues and also neighbours or community or other social groups.

What is the punishment for malicious communications?

Malicious communications sentencing guidelines vary depending on the legislation used.

If someone is guilty of an offence under the Malicious Communications Act 1988, they could be sentenced to 12 months’ imprisonment or receive a fine, or both, following a conviction in the Magistrates’ Court, or a prison sentence of up to two years or a fine or both on conviction in the Crown Court.

In contrast, offences under the Communications Act 2003 can only be heard in the Magistrates’ Court and result in a prison sentence of up to six months or a fine.

Can you go to court for malicious communications?

Yes, it is possible for a malicious communications charge to proceed to court. However, with the support of our expert criminal defence solicitors, we can significantly reduce this potential, building the strongest possible defence from the moment we are instructed.

Can you defend a malicious communications charge?

There are plenty of variables which can affect the defences that could be available to an allegation of malicious communications.

Detailed consideration will need to be paid to whether the communications fulfil the criteria of being malicious, and whether the intention behind sending the message can be proven.

Often communications can be classed as reasonable with the prosecution failing to prove otherwise.

Contact our malicious communications solicitors now

If you are due to attend the police station for interview, have been charged with a malicious communications offence require any urgent specialist advice or immediate representation, please do not hesitate to get in touch.

You can contact a member of our dedicated team of criminal defence lawyers in London, Birmingham, and Manchester by telephone on:

Or email: solicitors@jdspicer.co.uk

Alternatively, you can fill out our quick online enquiry form, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

24/7 legal representation for malicious communications

Please get in touch for a free initial consultation with one of our experts in defences against malicious communications charges, as well as for immediate advice and representation.

For immediate representation and advice, you can contact our Emergency Number: 07836 577 556 and we will provide you with the urgent assistance you need.

How can we help?