The offence of ‘take and drive conveyance without consent’ refers to situations where you steal a car, boat or other vehicle without the owner’s permission. It is a form of larceny.
There are two situations which may give rise to charges under section 154A:
- Where you took and drove a vehicle or vessel without the owner’s permission. You may also be charged if you took a vehicle or vessel for some other fraudulent purpose such as selling it.
- Where you knew that a vehicle or vessel was stolen but drove it anyway, or allowed yourself to be driven as a passenger in it.
If you are found guilty of this offence, you will face the same maximum penalty as for larceny – that is, five years’ imprisonment.
However, the maximum penalty will only apply in the most serious cases.
With the help of an experienced criminal lawyer, you may be able to persuade the magistrate or judge to deal with the offence more leniently.
Section 154A of the Crimes Act 1900 deals with the offence of ‘take conveyance without consent of owner’ and reads as follows:
154A Taking a conveyance without consent of owner
(1) Any person who:
(a) without having the consent of the owner or person in lawful possession of a conveyance, takes and drives it, or takes it for the purpose of driving it, or secreting it, or obtaining a reward for its restoration or pretended restoration, or for any other fraudulent purpose, or
(b) knowing that any conveyance has been taken without such consent, drives it or allows himself or herself to be carried in or on it,
Shall be deemed to be guilty of larceny and liable to be indicted for that offence.
(2) For the purposes of this section “conveyance” means any cart, wagon, cab, carriage, motor car, caravan, trailer, motor lorry, tractor, earth moving equipment, omnibus, motor or other bicycle, tank or other military vehicle, or any ship, or vessel, used or intended for navigation, and “drive” shall be construed accordingly.
Being charged with stealing a vehicle or vessel is an offence that has the potential to result in a lengthy custodial sentence.
However, with the right legal team on your side, you can give yourself a leading advantage when it comes to defending your innocence in court.
Our lawyers will carefully scrutinise all the evidence to find problems with the prosecution case, and, should any problems be found, we will push to have the charges dropped on this basis.
Alternatively, where charges cannot be dropped, our lawyers will work hard to understand your side of the story and obtain any relevant evidence that supports your case.
Our dedicated criminal law specialists will then construct a compelling argument, including any possible defences to the charges, and examine all relevant witnesses effectively in court.
Our senior lawyer guarantee means that you will be represented by the most qualified and experienced lawyers on our team, who have a proven track record of winning serious criminal cases.
Should you wish to plead guilty to the charges, our lawyers will push to have the matter heard in the Local Court, where the penalties are much lower.
We will also strive to obtain the most lenient penalty possible by presenting sentencing submissions which highlight positive factors; for example, your good character or limited criminal record.
For the best defence in your ‘take conveyance without consent of owner’ matter, call us today on (02) 9261 8881 and book a FREE first conference with the criminal law specialists.