Burglary Offences

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What the Law Says:

The Criminal Code in WA says that if you enter or remain in the place of another person, without that other person’s consent and do so with an intention to commit an offence in that place you will be guilty of a crime.

It also says that if you enter or remain in the place of another person, without that other person’s consent and while doing so commit an offence you will be guilty of a crime.

What the Prosecution must prove:

Where the charge involves the accused being in or entering the place without consent and while doing so intending to commit an offence the Prosecution must prove:

  1. That the accused entered or was in that place of another person;
  2. That the accused did not have the consent of the person to be there;
  3. That the accused had formed an intention to commit an offence either upon entry or when in the place.

Where the charge involves the accused being in or entering the place without consent and while doing so actually committing an offence the Prosecution must prove:

  1. That the accused entered or was in that place of another person;
  2. That the accused did not have the consent of the person to be there;
  3. That the accused actually committed an offence while in the place.

The offence of Burglary becomes more serious when it is committed in circumstances of aggravation. Where circumstances of aggravation are alleged and proven the penalties become more severe. Circumstances of aggravation include situations where where the offender:

  1. Is or pretends to be armed with a dangerous or offensive weapon;
  2. Is or pretends to be in possession of an explosive substance;
  3. Is in the company of another person or persons;
  4. Does bodily harm to any person;
  5. Threatens to kill or injure any person;
  6. Detains any person; or
  7. Immediately before the offence knew or ought to know that there were other people in that place (other than any co-offenders).

Which Court is my Charge likely to be heard in?

Burglary charges often involve complex issues. The offence of Burglary can be dealt with in the Magistrates Court but it may also be committed to the District Court for determination before a Judge and Jury. The court that determines the charge of Burglary depends on the circumstances of aggravation that are alleged.

Imprisonment is generally a more likely outcome for the offence of Burglary being dealt with at a sentencing in the District Court.

However if you are charged and convicted of the offence of Burglary the likelihood of serving a term of imprisonment is high irrespective of the court that hears and determines the matter.

The Three Strike Rule

A Court sentencing an offender who has committed three separate home burglaries must sentence the offender to at least 12 months immediate imprisonment.

We Can Help

It goes without saying that you should seek advice and representation from a criminal lawyer who has experience dealing with Burglary charges and where possible can negotiate with the prosecution in an effort to have the charges remain in the Magistrates Court.

Have you or someone you know been charged with Burglary? To the secure the services of an experienced criminal lawyer who will provide straight forward & no nonsense advice and the highest quality court representation call The Law Office of Andrew Williams on (08) 9278 2575 or contact us.