Criminal Defence Lawyers for Intentionally or Recklessly Destroy or Damage Property

Intentionally Or Recklessly Damage Property – s 195 Crimes Act 1900 (NSW)

Charged with destroying or damaging property is daunting with the prospects of getting a criminal conviction effecting your career and travel. Our senior criminal defence lawyers are considered sydney’s leading experts when it comes to carefully guiding you, preparing and powerfully presenting your case to successfully avoid a conviction in and out of court.

Call us now on (02) 8606 2218 to book a free first consultation with an experienced Criminal Defence Lawyer.

Your Options in Court

PLEADING NOT GUILTY

You can only be found guilty to a charge of intentionally or recklessly destroying or damaging property if police can prove each of the following elements to this charge:

  • You intentionally or recklessly damaged property; and
  • That property belonged to another person

You will be found not guilty, and the charge dismissed in court if police are unable to prove any one of the above elements.

Defences to this charge

You will be Not Guilty if:

  • You didn’t realise that the kind of damage caused might have been caused at the time of doing it.
  • You didn’t cause the property to be damaged.
  • Self Defence: where you did what you did to protect either yourself, another person or a property, and your response was reasonable in the circumstances perceived by you at the time.
  • Mistaken identity.
  • Duress or Necessity: Where you were forced to do it, or where you did it to avoid serious injury.

Our lawyers specialty is getting charges dropped early saving you money and time. If any of the above defences apply to you, our senior lawyers will analyse the evidence, strengthen your defence, and begin negotiations with police to get your charge dropped early. They have been successful at achieving this for over 20 years on countless cases they take on.

PLEADING GUILTY

If pleading guilty to a charge of destroying or damaging property, be sure to speak to a senior specialist defence lawyer on how to maximise your chances to avoid a criminal conviction against your name. Below are critical tips and hints on some of the best ways to prepare for your sentence to avoid a conviction.

25% Discount on punishment

Pleading guilty to a charge of destroy or damage property at an early enough stage of your case can allow the Judge to give you a 25% discount on your punishment, resulting in a much lighter outcome, and better chance at avoiding a criminal record. The later you enter the plea, the smaller that discount gets.

For these reasons, it’s important to get experienced advice as early as possible in your case.

Good character references

These are letters from people close to you, including, family, friends, work, charity, and even from you. Each letter should express your good character, remorse, insight, contrition and shame. This allows the Judge to give you more leniency and move towards a section 10 non conviction.

Our senior lawyers will guide you through the process and review each letter before handing it to the Judge to read.

Negotiate to drop charges

Our team of senior lawyers have over 20 years of experience in successfully convincing police to drop destroy and damage property charges at an early stage of the case.

Having perfected this skill over time, our senior lawyers have successfully achieved this countless times by carefully analysing and pulling apart the police evidence, point out all the holes in it, and then strategically approach police with reasons why your charge should be dropped. Each case is different, and each case is approached differently.

Negotiate facts

The set of police facts are read by the Judge which is normally drafted by police, expressing your offending behaviour and extent of damage caused which you plead guilty to. This often reflects you in a bad light particularly when it’s usually a one sided version of what happened. This more likely results in a heavier punishment than you deserve.

To avoid this, and to achieve a much lighter, better result in court, our lawyers negotiate and change those set of facts to ensure it properly expresses an accurate version of what happened, putting you in a better light to the Judge. Our senior lawyers have over 20 years experience in achieving this result by analysing the police evidence and pointing out all the holes in it.

Psychologist reports

A court report from a highly experienced and respected psychologist or psychiatrist can boost your punishment to a much lighter one, with a better result. This is often achieved by choosing the right expert, and ensuring the court report comments on your state of mind at the time, remorse, contrition, and shame.

Our senior lawyers will hand pick the best suited psychologist or psychiatrist to your case, and ensure the main points are commented on in your report before its handed to the Judge. This will maximise the strength of your report, leading to a better chance at avoiding a criminal record.

Maximum penalty

The maximum punishment for an offence of destroy or damage property is a term of imprisonment of up to 5 years.

If the damage or destruction is caused by a fire or explosive, the maximum punishment is a term of imprisonment of up to 10 years.

If the damage or destruction you caused was in the company of another person, the maximum punishment is a term of imprisonment of up to 6 years. However, if in those same circumstances, the damage or destruction was caused by a fire or explosive, the maximum term of imprisonment is up to 11 years.

If the damage or destruction is caused by you during a public disorder, the maximum punishment is a term of imprisonment of up to 7 years. If the destruction or damage was caused by a fire or explosive, the maximum term of imprisonment is up to 12 years.

If the value of the property damaged is less than $5000, the maximum punishment which can be imposed is up to 12 months imprisonment and/or a fine of up to $5,500. But where the value is less than $2000, the maximum fine is up to $2,200.

If the matter is dealt with in the Local Court, and value of the property damaged is more than $5000, the maximum a Judge can give is up to 2 years imprisonment.

Judges rarely give out maximum punishments. The maximum is only given to the most serious of cases, often for offenders with lengthy criminal convictions. Below are other options of punishment the Judge can give you.

Types of penalties

The Judge can give you any one of the following different types of punishment, depending on how serious or trivial your offence is, and the way you prepare and present your case as discussed in the above points.

  1. Section 10 Dismissal
  2. Conditional Release Order
  3. Fine
  4. Community Correction Order
  5. Intensive Correction Order
  6. Full Time Imprisonment

Speak to one of our criminal defence lawyers now to get started on your preparation right away. Our team of senior lawyers are Sydney’s leading experts in criminal law who know exactly how to prepare and powerfully present your case to maximise your chances to avoid a criminal conviction.

Call us now on (02) 8606 2218 to book a free first consultation with an experienced Criminal Defence Lawyer.

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