One of our Senior Lawyers obtained a section 10 (no conviction) for a highly-publicised ‘aggravated break, enter and steal’ case heard at the Downing Centre District Court.
After a night out with some friends, our client, a 19-year-old man, was hanging out outside a clothing store with three other friends.
He leant against the door to the store, which incidentally opened as staff had forgotten to engage the security locks on the door to the shop.
Our client, along with two co-accused, then entered the shop and stole a number of items of clothing valued at around $1000.
Members of the public observed them leaving the store and reported the incident to police, who located the group a short time later in an alleyway along with the stolen clothing.
Our client was charged with ‘aggravated break and enter and commit serious indictable offence,’ which carries a maximum penalty of 20 years imprisonment.
Statistics published by the Judicial Commission show that 65% of people charged with this offence in higher courts receive a sentence of imprisonment.
Undeterred by this, our senior lawyer worked tirelessly to obtain the best result for our client.
Following the break and enter, our client was held hostage in the Sydney siege late last year.
Understandably, this affected his mental health – however it also was a test of character for our client, who was commended for his ‘bravery and maturity’ during the ordeal.
Our senior lawyer was able to obtain a psychologist’s report to support our client’s case and prepared submissions which emphasised the appropriateness of a lenient penalty.
After lengthy verbal submissions on the sentencing date, the judge was ultimately persuaded to impose a ‘section 10 good behaviour bond’ despite the seriousness of the charge. This means that our client escapes a criminal record, which would have had a detrimental impact on his life and future.
The Judicial Commission statistics indicate that less than 1% of ‘aggravated break and enter and commit serious indictable offence’ cases dealt with in the higher courts over the past 7 years were finalised by way of a section 10 good behaviour bond.
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