“Intention to deceive” refers to situations where a manager or officer of a company or organisation makes or publishes false or misleading statements with the intention of deceiving creditors, shareholders or other members of the organisation.
Statements will be considered to be “false or misleading” where you knew or should have known that the statement was false, but you still made it with the intention of causing others to rely on it.
Statements may be made orally or in writing.
Often, people are charged under this section where they make false statements about a company’s financial performance in order to cause investors or creditors to believe that the company is in a more favourable financial position than it really is.
While “intention to deceive” charges can have a damaging effect on your future life and career, our fraud experts have the knowledge and experience to give you the best possible defence against the charges.
Read on to find out how we can help you win your “intention to deceive” case.
Pleading Not Guilty
Before you can be found guilty of “intention to deceive,” the prosecution has to prove certain factors (known as the ‘elements’ of the offence) beyond a reasonable doubt:
- That you were a manager or officer of an organisation;
- That you made or published statements that you knew were, or may have been false or misleading in a material particular;
- That you made or published the statement dishonestly;
- That you had the intention of deceiving members or creditors of the organisation about its affairs.
If the prosecution is unable to prove any one of these elements beyond a reasonable doubt, you will be found ‘not guilty’ of the offence.
Our experienced lawyers will therefore work hard to cast doubt on the prosecution case by producing all favourable evidence in court and working hard to dismantle the prosecution witnesses’ testimony and evidence, for example, by proving that you were unaware that the statements were false or misleading.
We can also identify any possible defences to the charges; for example:
- Where you were threatened or coerced into making the false or misleading statement (duress)
- Where you made an honest and reasonable mistake of fact as to the accuracy of a statement honest and reasonable mistake of fact
Our lawyers have helped countless clients avoid a conviction in serious fraud cases including “intention to deceive,” and have the expertise and knowledge to ensure that you receive the best possible outcome in your case.
In situations where you do not wish to contest the allegations against you, you may simply enter a plea of guilty at an early stage in the proceedings.
Often, this can result in a more favourable outcome as it will show to the court that you have accepted responsibility for your actions – they may therefore be more inclined to impose a lenient penalty; also known as a “discount” on your sentence.
However, before pleading guilty to “intention to deceive,” it is advised that you seek assistance from one of our expert lawyers, who have the knowledge and experience to best advise whether there is any way to fight the charges to avoid a conviction altogether.
You should also be aware of the maximum penalty that you could face if you are considering pleading guilty to this offence.
The maximum penalty for “intention to deceive” is 7 years’ imprisonment.
While this is evidently a lengthy penalty, it is important to remember that it is the absolute maximum and will only apply in the most serious criminal cases.
Ultimately, the court will determine the appropriate penalty after considering the facts and circumstances of your case.
It is therefore important to get an experienced criminal lawyer on your side who can present your side of the story in the most positive light.
The types of penalties that the court can impose include:
- Good behaviour bond
- Community service order
- Intensive correction order
- Home detention
- Suspended sentence
- Full-time imprisonment
Our lawyers are fraud specialists and have the knowledge and insight necessary to secure the most lenient outcome in your “intention to deceive” case.
Being accused of a fraud offence such as “intention to deceive” can be a stressful and confronting experience for you and your loved ones, especially where it has the potential to impact your work life and future career.
However, you don’t have to fight the battle alone.
Our specialist fraud lawyers have considerable experience fighting and winning these types of cases and can advise you on the best course of action when it comes to securing a positive outcome in your fraud case.
Our lawyers will dedicate the time to carefully examine all the evidence in order to identify problems with the prosecution case at an early stage.
Where problems are found, we will write letters to the prosecution seeking to have the charges dropped.
This often means that our clients avoid the time, stress and expense involved in fighting the charges in court.
However, rest assured that should your matter end up in court, our lawyers will work alongside leading criminal defence barristers to construct a strong defence case.
We will work tirelessly to dismantle the prosecution evidence and witness testimony, as well as raising any viable defences to your actions, such as where you were threatened or coerced into making the statement, or where you honestly and reasonably believed that the statement was accurate.
We can also assist you where you simply wish to plead guilty, by preparing compelling sentencing submissions which emphasise the appropriateness of a lenient penalty.
We pride ourselves on our ability to obtain excellent results in even the most serious cases thanks to the hard work and dedication of our outstanding defence team.
Call us today on (02) 9261 8881 and book your FREE first appointment with our experts to discuss the best way forward in your case.