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Criminal Law FAQ NSW

What are the Acts that constitute the offence of Burglary?

Burglary which is a criminal offence and the acts punishable are as follows:

  1. the act of entering the building and
  2. with intent to commit a felony in the building. These elements of the offence of burglary were discussed in the leading case of R. vs. Dugan wherein in the actusreus is the act of entering and the mansrea is the intent to commit robbery in the building.

Can entrapment be raised as a defence in criminal law?

In criminal law, entrapment can be raised as a defense by the accused. Although there are
are no significant case law discussing entrapment as a defense, the court in many case law has tend to suggest that in some instances where the accused would not have done the offence if not on the provocative activity of the agent provocateur, the sentence imposed will be reduced. This is because the court use common sense approach in dealing with the case and will assess the surrounding circumstances of the case to determine the possibility of the non-commission of the offence in the absence of the agent provocateur.

Is it an obligation to report additional income to Centrelink?

Any payments received which change the income and the information previously submitted to Centrelink must be reported for it takes an extraordinarily dim view of not reporting the same. It is a legal obligation to update Centrelink with information regarding your income together with some relevant information. Failure to update your information previously submitted to Centelink to reflect your current income is a ground for a case of fraud against you.

Is taking of neighbour ‘s bile without consent an offence of larceny ?

Yes. The act of talking a neighbor’s bike without the latter’s consent is an offence of larceny. It is not a defense that you have the intention of returning it after. However, if during the trial you were able to prove that the taking was due to an emergency situation, then the court will take it into consideration and you can raise it as defense of necessity.

Are all accused in criminal offences granted bail?

No. Not all accused in criminal offences are granted bail, so there is no assurance that when you are criminally charge you can immediately post bail. Serious offences like murder, multiple damage to property and serious drug offences, bail will not be granted.

The granting of bail also differs from state and territory. And there are certain circumstances the court will take into consideration in hearing the application for bail. And these are:

1.whether the accused is flight risk or the likelihood that he will not appear in court when called upon
2. whether he is dangerous to the community and
3. Whether he will repeat the commission of the offense charged or interferes with the evidence or tampers the jury.

What are the distinctive factors between summary and indictable offnces?

If matters are tried and heard by the judge alone without the need of jury, then it is a summary offence. If the offence is to be tried by the jury and the judge, then it is deemed an indictable offence. For an offence to be considered as summary offence, there must be a statute declaring the offence as summary and can be tried by the judge alone. If there is no statute prescribing it, then it is considered an indictable offence.

Summary offences are exemplified by traffic offences, and other less serious or petty crimes. When the offender was charged with indictable offence and he pleaded not guilty, trial by the jury will follow as a rule.

Aside from summary and indictable offence, there is another type of offence known as hybrid offence which the offender can choose whether his or her case is to be tried by the judge alone or by the jury or both.  

Disclaimer : This article is just a summary of the subject matter being discussed and should not be regarded as a comprehensive legal advice for you to defend yourself alone. If you are charged with criminal offences, it is recommended that you seek legal assistance from criminal lawyers.

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