Have you been charged with Burglary?
If so, you will need to speak with an experienced criminal lawyer. There may be defences available to you which you are unaware of should the matter proceed to court.
Can the prosecution establish all elements of the charge? Did you actually enter the building or part of it in question? Did you believe you had permission to enter the building? Did you enter the building with the intent to steal property from, assault someone in or damage the building?
You will need to discuss these issues with your lawyer prior to telling a court how you intend to plead to this charge.
See below for further information on Burglary.
Section 76 of the Crimes Act 1958.
The prosecution must prove:
The defendant entered part of a building;
The defendant did so as a trespasser; and
That when entering the relevant part of the building, the defendant intended to steal, commit assault or damage the building.
The maximum penalty
Level 5 imprisonment being a maximum of 10 years.
Where will my case be heard?
A charge of burglary with intent to steal can be heard in the Magistrates court. However, if the value of the property exceeds $100,000 it will be heard in the County or Supreme Court.
A charge of burglary with intent to assault or cause damage to the building must be heard in the County or Supreme Court, most likely the County Court.
What to do next
Burglary is a serious offence and if proven can result in heavy penalties, including imprisonment. If you have been charged with burglary you should arrange an appointment with one of our experienced criminal lawyers to ensure you receive the best defence possible.
A person is guilty of burglary if he enters any building or part of a building as a trespasser with intent—
to steal anything in the building or part in question; or
(b) to commit an offence—
(i) involving an assault to a person in the building or part in question; or
(ii) involving any damage to the building or to property in the building or part in question—
which is punishable with imprisonment for a term of five years or more.
References in subsection (1) to a building shall apply also to an inhabited vehicle or vessel, and shall apply to any such vehicle or vessel at times when the person having a habitation in it is not there as well as at times when he is.
(3) A person guilty of burglary is guilty of an indictable offence and liable to level 5 imprisonment (10 years maximum).