Criminal Defence Lawyers for Receiving Stolen Goods

Receive Stolen Goods – s 188 Crimes Act

Arrested and charged for receiving stolen property is a difficult experience. Our criminal defence lawyers are highly experienced in stealing offences, with over 20 years in successfully securing not guilty verdicts, and getting these charges dropped early countless times. Our team of lawyers know exactly how to maximise your chances at avoiding a criminal record, in order to get you a s10.

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

Your Options in Court



You can only be found guilty to the offence of receiving stolen property if police can prove each of the following elements of the charge, beyond reasonable doubt:

  • You either received, disposed or attempted to dispose property; and
  • That property was already stolen; and
  • The stealing that already took place before you received it constituted an offence carrying a penalty of up to 5 or more years imprisonment i.e. larceny; and
  • You knew the property was stolen when receiving it, or when you disposed or tried to dispose it.

Your charge will be dismissed, and you will be found not guilty, if police are unable to prove each of the above 4 elements.

Defences to this charge

You will be Not Guilty if:

  • You didn’t know, or you were only suspicious but shut a blind eye to the possibility, that the property was stolen at the time of receiving or disposing it.
  • The property was not stolen before it came to you.
  • You didn’t know the property was in your possession. i.e. where it was found in a shared house, and raises a possibility it belonged to someone else.
  • Duress or Necessity: Where you were forced or threatened to commit the offence, or where you did it to avoid serious harm to yourself or someone else.

Your charge will be dismissed, and you will be not guilty if any one of the above defences to this offence apply to your case.

Call our team of senior lawyers now on (02) 8606 2218 for practical and realistic advice and guidance on how to strengthen your best possible defence early. Our lawyers have successfully proven countless of their clients innocence in court, and convinced police to drop these charges early for over 20 years.



If you decide to plead guilty to receiving stolen property charges, speak to an experienced senior lawyer on how to get you the best chances to get a s10, in order to avoid a criminal record. See the following extremely helpful tips on how to best prepare your case to achieve this.

25% Discount on punishment

Pleading guilty early in your case to an offence of receiving stolen goods will get you a 25% discount on punishment. This results in a more lenient outcome, and better chances at avoiding a conviction.

The later the plea of guilty is entered, the less this discount gets. This is why it’s critical to get early realistic advice from an experienced lawyer.

Good character references

Getting letters from family, friends, work, charity and even letter of apology from you for the Judge to read can allow the Judge to consider a more lenient outcome, better result.

For best possible results, each letter should comment on your good character, contrition, remorse, shame and your understanding on why what you did was wrong. Our lawyers will guide you through this process.

Negotiate to drop charges

Having an in depth understanding of the police evidence, and with this, pointing out the problems in it to police, can result in your receiving stolen goods charge to be dropped by police early.

Our lawyers have a proven record of successfully achieving this countless times for over 20 years. Known as specialists in getting charges dropped early, they will cater a strategic approach to negotiating with police, tailored to your case.

Negotiate facts

The police set of facts is a document initially drafted by police. It expresses your offending conduct, which you plead guilty to. Often we have seen this to be one sided, unfair and inaccurate when read by the Judge to punish you on. This usually results in a heavier punishment.

To avoid this, our lawyers often successfully negotiate this document to reflect you in a more favourable way, often resulting in a much more lenient, better result in court. This is often achieved by picking out all the holes in the evidence, with tactful negotiations.

Psychologist reports

Getting a strong court report from a highly respected and experienced psychologist or psychiatrist expert for the Judge to read, can dramatically improve your court result, with a much more lenient outcome.

To maximise your chances at achieving this, our lawyers will hand select the best suited expert to your case, ensuring the report expresses opinions on your mental state, remorse, insight and shame.

Maximum penalty

If dealt with in the Local Court, and where the value of the property is more than $5,000, the maximum punishment is a term of imprisonment of up to 2 years.

If dealt with in the Local Court, and where the value of the property is less than $5,000, the maximum punishment is a term of imprisonment of up to 1 year and/or fine of up to $5,500.

If dealt with in the Local Court, and where the value of the property is less than $2,000, the maximum punishment is 1 year imprisonment and/or a fine of up to $2,200.

Usually this offence is dealt with in the local court, but if it’s dealt with in the District Court, the maximum punishment is a term of imprisonment of up to 10 years. If the property involved is a motor vehicle or vessel, or a part of it, the maximum is 12 years imprisonment.

You should know that the Judges rarely give maximum punishments, and when it’s given, it’s generally only given to the worst of cases.

Types of penalties

The Judge will give you any one of the following kinds of punishment. This will depend on the above points in preparing and presenting your case in court:

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

To maximise your chances at avoiding prison, or a criminal record, speak to one of our highly respected leading criminal defence lawyers who hold over 20 years experience in specialising in these cases. In relation to your receiving stolen goods offence, they will thoroughly analyse and prepare your case to ensure you are presented in the best possible way to the Judge.

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


  What Our Clients Say

I was represented by Emerson Lamarre from CDLA for driving offences and possession of weapon charges which he got all chargers dropped for me. I could not have asked for… (read full review) By B.F. from Sydney on 22/11/2023
I am incredibly grateful to Alex and Emerson, who provided exceptional representation in my recent court case. Their extensive expertise and strategic approach gave me the best result in court.… (read full review) By J.C. from Sydney on 27/11/2023
Ibrahim and Emerson were amazing as my lawyers for court. They were professional, knowledgeable, and provided excellent support throughout my whole case. They went above and beyond to make sure… (read full review) By E.A. from Sydney on 24/11/2023
Nothing but 5 star service and professionalism from Sean of CDLA. He is empathetic and sincere and experienced in the criminal justice system. My case was won all because of… (read full review) By M.A. from Sydney on 24/11/2023
I hired Emerson from Criminal Defence Lawyers Australia for my case. I am satisfied with the decision and now I am free from the criminal record. Thank you for your… (read full review) By Y.K. from Sydney on 23/10/2023

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