Issuing an instrument for an improper purpose is an offence under section 337 of the Crimes Act 1900, which carries a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison.
To establish the offence, the prosecution must prove beyond reasonable doubt that:
A ‘public officer’ is any person working for a government department, statutory authority, local council or parliamentary body.
This includes an employee of:
A materially false or misleading particular may include a false name, date or other detail which could influence the grant of the instrument.
An ‘improper purpose’ may include issuing a licence, visa, tax status or company registration to a person who was not entitled to it.
Duress is a defence to the charge.
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