52 charges of Obtain Property by Deception and Theft from an Employer located near Braeside.
The client had worked in the warehouse of a company for a number of years. He was aged in his late 40s and looking after his oldest son, having recently split up with his wife. As a result of the breakup the client was broke and subsequently started to steal things from the warehouse and put them on Ebay. The client was charged with $24 000 worth of theft.
Fortunately the client had no prior criminal history and had lead a blameless life. We opposed the figure put forward by police as the total value of the stolen goods. They had used the recommended retail price rather than cost price.
In addition we successfully negotiated with the prosecution to reduce the charges to only two charges. This was unusual as prosecutors rarely roll up a charge where there are multiple victims.
After entering a guilty plea, the Magistrate was inclined to sentence the client to an immediate prison sentence. Fortunately we had helped the client arrange medical documentation and powerful character references, which persuaded the Magistrate not to imprison the client immediately.
The client received an 8 month gaol sentence wholly suspended for a period of 24 months. The Court did not order that the client pay restitution because the amount was in dispute. It was a very close call, but the client escaped prison time.