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Armed Robbery

Armed robbery is an offence under section 97 of the Crimes Act 1900 which carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison

To establish the offence, the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that you:

  1. Were armed with an offensive weapon or instrument, or were in the company of another person or persons, and
  2. Robbed or assaulted another person with the intention to rob, or stopped any mail, person with mail, vehicle, train with the intention to rob or search.

The legislation does not define the word ‘rob’ however, the courts have found that it is where:

“the victim… [is] compelled by force or fear to submit to the theft”… It is not necessary that the offender applies force… It is enough that the offender by his or her conduct…Puts the victim in fear of violence”.

‘Offensive weapon or instrument’ means:

  1. A dangerous weapon, or
  2. Anything made or adapted for offensive purposes, whether or not it is ordinarily used as a weapon or capable of causing harm

The maximum penalty increases to 25 years in prison where you were armed with a ‘dangerous weapon’ which is:

  1. A firearm or imitation firearm,
  2. A prohibited weapon, or
  3. A spear gun.

Defences to the charge include:

  1. Self-defence,
  2. Duress, and
  3. Necessity.

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