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Destroying or Damaging an Aircraft or Vessel with Intent or Reckless Indifference

Destroying or Damaging an Aircraft or Vessel with Intent or Reckless Indifference is an offence under section 204 of the Crimes Act 1900, which carries a maximum penalty of 25 years in prison.

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

  1. You destroyed or damaged an aircraft or vessel, and
  2. You did so with the intention of causing the death of another person, or with reckless indifference for the safety of any other person’s life.

An ‘aircraft’ is any machine that can derive support in the atmosphere from the reactions of the air.

A ‘vessel’ is a water craft of any description that is capable of being used as a means of transportation on water.

You were ‘recklessly indifferent’ if you came to the realisation that endangering life was a probable consequence or likely result of your actions, but went ahead with your actions regardless.

Defences to the charge include:

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

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