Section 471.2 Criminal Code Act | Receiving Stolen Mail


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The Legislation

Section 471.2 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth) is Receiving Stolen Mail and is extracted below.

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471.2 Receiving stolen mail-receptacles, articles or postal messages

(1) A person is guilty of an offence if the person dishonestly receives stolen property, knowing or believing the property to be stolen.

Penalty: Imprisonment for 10 years.

Stolen property

(2) For the purposes of this section, property is stolen property if, and only if:

(a) it is original stolen property (as defined by subsection (3)); or

(b) it is tainted property (as defined by subsection (5)).

This subsection has effect subject to subsection (4).

Original stolen property

(3) For the purposes of this section, original stolen property is property, or a part of property, that:

(a) was appropriated in the course of an offence against section 471.1 (whether or not the property, or the part of the property, is in the state it was in when it was so appropriated); and

(b) is in the possession or custody of the person who so appropriated the property.

(4) For the purposes of this section, property ceases to be original stolen property:

(a) after the property is restored:

(i) to the person from whom it was appropriated; or

(ii) to other lawful possession or custody; or

(b) after:

(i) the person from whom the property was appropriated ceases to have any right to restitution in respect of the property; or

(ii) a person claiming through the person from whom the property was appropriated ceases to have any right to restitution in respect of the property.

Tainted property

(5) For the purposes of this section, tainted property is property that:

(a) is (in whole or in part) the proceeds of sale of, or property exchanged for, original stolen property; and

(b) is in the possession or custody of the person who so appropriated the original stolen property.

Alternative verdicts

(6) If, in a prosecution for an offence against section 471.1, the trier of fact is not satisfied that the defendant is guilty of the offence, but is satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty of an offence against this section, the trier of fact may find the defendant not guilty of the offence against section 471.1 but guilty of the offence against this section, so long as the defendant has been accorded procedural fairness in relation to that finding of guilt.

(7) If, in a prosecution for an offence against this section, the trier of fact is not satisfied that the defendant is guilty of the offence, but is satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that the defendant is guilty of an offence against section 471.1, the trier of fact may find the defendant not guilty of the offence against this section but guilty of the offence against section 471.1, so long as the defendant has been accorded procedural fairness in relation to that finding of guilt.

Receiving stolen property before commencement

(8) For the purposes of this section:

(a) it is to be assumed that section 471.1 had been in force at all times before the commencement of this section; and

(b) property that was appropriated at a time before the commencement of this section does not become stolen property unless the property was appropriated in circumstances that (apart from paragraph (a)) amounted to an offence against a law of the Commonwealth in force at that time.