If you are a manager or officer of a company or organisation, you are expected to exercise due diligence and care in making accurate statements relating to the company’s affairs.
If you make or publish a false or misleading statement in company materials with the intention of deceiving creditors, shareholder or other members of the organisation, you could be charged with ‘intention to deceive.’
The prosecution must also prove that you made the statement dishonestly; that is, you knew or should have known that the statement was false.
A common example of ‘intention to deceive’ is where a manager or company officer publishes false statements in financial reports which leads creditors or investors to believe that the company is in a more favourable financial position than it actually is.
This offence carries a maximum penalty of 7 years imprisonment.
However, this is the absolute maximum and will only apply in the most serious cases – with the assistance of an experienced criminal lawyer, you can avoid these onerous penalties.
Section 192H of the Crimes Act 1900 deals with the offence of ‘Intention to Deceive’ and reads as follows:
192H Intention to deceive members or creditors by false or misleading statement of officer of organisation
(1) An officer of an organisation who, with the intention of deceiving members or creditors of the organisation about its affairs, dishonestly makes or publishes, or concurs in making or publishing, a statement (whether or not in writing) that to his or her knowledge is or may be false or misleading in a material particular is guilty of an offence. Maximum penalty: Imprisonment for 7 years.
(2) In this section:“Creditor” of an organisation includes a person who has entered into a security for the benefit of the organisation.“Officer” of an organisation includes any member of the organisation who is concerned in its management and any person purporting to act as an officer of the organisation.“Organisation” means any body corporate or unincorporated association.
Being accused of committing fraud can be a confronting and stressful experience, particularly where you believe that you are innocent.
However, the experts at Sydney Criminal Lawyers® will guide you through every step of the court process from start to finish.
Our lawyers will take the time to listen to your side of the story and explain the charges to you to ensure that you understand your options.
Our criminal law specialists will then carefully examine all the evidence in order to identify problems with the prosecution case; where issues are found, we can write ‘representations’ to the prosecution seeking to have the charges dropped on this basis.
Often, this means that our clients are spared the time and expense of a defended hearing or criminal trial.
If the prosecution refuses to drop the charges, our senior lawyers will construct a strong defence case which presents all evidence in a favourable light in order to dismantle the prosecution case.
We guarantee that you will be represented at all major court dates by our knowledgeable senior lawyers; outstanding advocates who have considerable experience examining witnesses and presenting material in a compelling manner.
Our senior lawyers can also assist if you wish to plead guilty to the offence; in these situations we can prepare persuasive sentencing submissions which focus on positive factors in order to maximise your chances of obtaining the most lenient penalty possible.
Our lawyers strongly believe in fighting for your rights – our passion for criminal law and protecting our clients’ rights sets us a cut above other law firms.
Call us today on (02) 9261 8881 to book your FREE first conference with our criminal law specialists.