ROBBERY OFFENCES: THE LAW IN NSW
Generally, ‘robbery’ is a reference to situations where either a threat is made, or actual harm occurs, against a person for the purpose of taking their belongings. There is a misconception that robberies can only occur at banks or petrol stations, however, legally, robberies can occur towards individuals in any setting, and for any value of property, such as wallets and mobile phones. Robbery is much more serious than a stealing offence, known as ‘larceny’, as it involves threats or actual harm to obtain the property, whilst ‘larceny’ disregards this component.
Robbery offences in New South Wales are dealt with under Part 4 Division 2 of the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW), in the following sections:
- Section 94 – Robbery or stealing from the person;
- Section 95 – Same in circumstances of aggravation;
- Section 96 – Same (robbery) with wounding;
- Section 97 – Robbery etc or stopping a mail, being armed or in company; and
- Section 98 – Robbery with arms etc and wounding
Section 94 concerns robbing or assaulting another person with the intention of robbing them. An offence under this provision is also committed if any chattel, money, or valuable security is stolen from another person. If you are convicted of this offence, then you may be liable to imprisonment for fourteen (14) years. However, if the offence is heard before the Local Court, then the maximum penalty is two (2) years.
Section 95 is an extension of section 94 and increases the maximum penalty to twenty (20) years imprisonments if there are ‘circumstances of aggravation’ in relation to the robbery committed.
Circumstances of aggravation is where immediately before, at the time, or immediately after the robbery, assault or larceny, there was an involvement of one or more of the following:
- Offender uses corporal violence on any person; or
- Offender intentionally or recklessly inflicts actual bodily harm on any person; or
- Offender deprives any person of his or her liberty.
Section 96 further extends section 95, increasing the maximum gaol term to twenty-five (25) years. If at the time the robbery was committed, it is shown that any person was wounded or received grievous bodily harm, then this offence will become established.
Section 97 concerns a person armed with a weapon and instrument, or is in company with another person and:
- Robs or assaults another person with the intention of robbing them; or
- Stops any mail, vehicle, railway train, or person conveying a mail with the intention of robbing or searching them.
The legislation denotes that a maximum penalty of twenty-years (20) imprisonment applies to the offence, but if found that the weapon involved is a ‘dangerous weapon’, such as a firearm or speargun, then the maximum sentence is increased to twenty-five (25) years.
Section 98 is an extremely serious offence concerning a person who robs whilst armed with a weapon or instrument, or is in company of another person, and:
- Rob or assaults a person with the intention of robbing them; and
- Immediately before, at the time, or after wound or inflict grievous bodily harm on the person that they were robbing.
This offence is extremely serious, carrying a maximum gaol term of twenty-five years (25) imprisonment.
How JB Solicitors Can Help
Robbery offences are very serious offences where it is vital that you receive legal representation, especially as there may be a defence or mitigating factor that is applicable to your case.
JB Solicitors has a leading team of highly experienced criminal lawyers who can assist you with your matter. We understand the seriousness of the offence, and the difficulties you face when charged with robbery. You will be provided with accurate and tailored advice to assist you in achieving the best possible outcome for your personal circumstance.
If you have been charged with a robbery offence and need to know your options moving forward, please contact JB solicitors today on 02 9723 8080, or alternatively, visit our Canley Heights Office.