Have you been charged with the criminal law offence of fraud? It's important to seek legal advice from an experienced lawyer as soon as possible. Learn more about this offence below.
s. 408C Fraud (Criminal Code Queensland)
In Queensland, it is an offence to commit fraud. Fraud includes when a person dishonestly:
- Uses another person’s property for their own use;
- Obtains property from another person;
- Induces another person to deliver property to any person;
- Gains benefit or advantage, pecuniary or otherwise, to any person;
- Causes a detriment, pecuniary or otherwise, to any person;
- Induces any person to do any act which the person is lawfully entitled to abstain from doing; or
- Induces any person from abstaining from doing any act which that person is lawfully entitled to do; or
- Makes off, knowing that payment on the spot is required or expected for any property supplied or returned or for any service provided, without having paid and with intent to avoid payment.
‘Property’ includes physical items such as a phone, as well as non-physical items such as money and credit arrangements.
The maximum penalty for fraud offences is 12 years’ imprisonment, however can be increased to 20 years depending on the facts of the case. A person’s criminal history, and the sum of money fraudulently acquired or the quantum of property defrauded will be considered when sentencing a person for a Fraud offence. Highly sophisticated Fraud offences which result in the acquisition of money or property of high value will attract a more serious penalty. Fraud offences are dealt with either in the Magistrates or District Court (depending on the circumstances).
In Queensland, if a person is convicted of Fraud, then the court could impose one of the following penalties:
- Jail (suspended, parole or actual time);
- Intensive Corrections Order;
The actual penalty will depend on the circumstances of the matter including the seriousness of the offence and the individual circumstances and background of the Defendant.
Are there any defences available to this charge?
Yes. The facts of your case will determine which defences will be available for you. The following defences may be available to you:
- Actions were honest or a result of an honest and reasonable mistake;
- Honest claim of right;
- The thing taken was not property;
- The accused had consent to acquire the property.
What should I do if the police want to speak to me about a fraud allegation or if I am charged with Fraud?
You have the right to remain silent. You DO have to provide the police with your name, date of birth and contact details. You should NOT answer any questions, make any statement or participate in any interview with the police. You should be polite to the officer but insist that you want to talk to your lawyer. You have the right to telephone a friend, relative or lawyer.
Call an Expert
If you are charged with a criminal offence, it is very important that you seek immediate legal advice. Our team at Brooke Winter Solicitors can give you over the phone advice. We have a solid reputation as expert Criminal Lawyers and can represent you in court.
Call us on 1300 066 669 if you have any questions. We can assist you no matter where you are located and can appear in every court.