Break and Enter- Section 112 Crimes Act 1900

A person who breaks and enters any dwelling-house or other building and commits any serious indictable offence therein, or being in any dwelling-house or other building commits any serious indictable offence therein and breaks out of the dwelling-house or other building.

The maximum penalty is imprisonment for 14 years.

Aggravated

A person is guilty of an offence under this subsection if the person commits an offence under subsection (1) in circumstances of aggravation.

The maximum penalty is imprisonment for 20 years.

Specially aggravated

A person is guilty of an offence under this subsection if the person commits an offence under subsection (2) in circumstances of special aggravation.

The maximum penalty is imprisonment for 25 years.

Definition as follows:

circumstances of aggravation-means circumstances involving any one or more of the following:

  • the alleged offender is armed with an offensive weapon, or instrument,
  • the alleged offender is in the company of another person or persons,
  • the alleged offender uses corporal violence on any person,
  • the alleged offender intentionally or recklessly inflicts actual bodily harm on any person,
  • the alleged offender deprives any person of his or her liberty,
  • the alleged offender knows that there is a person, or that there are persons, in the place where the offence is alleged to be committed.

circumstances of special aggravation-means circumstances involving any or all of the following:

  • the alleged offender intentionally wounds or intentionally inflicts grievous bodily harm on any person,
  • the alleged offender inflicts grievous bodily harm on any person and is reckless as to causing actual bodily harm to that or any other person,
  • the alleged offender is armed with a dangerous weapon.

Maximum Penalties

SectionOffenceMaximum Penalty
s109Break out of a dwelling-house after committing, or enter w/i to commit an indictable offence14 years imprisonment.
s110Break, enter and assault w/i to murder25 years imprisonment.
s111Enter a dwelling-house w/i to commit serious indictable offence10 years imprisonment.
s112Break, enter and commit serious indictable offence14 years imprisonment.
s113Break & enter w/i to commit serious indictable offence10 years imprisonment.
s114Armed w/i to commit serious indictable offence7 years imprisonment.
s115Convicted offender armed w/i to commit an indictable offence10 years imprisonment.

Your Options in Court

Pleading Not Guilty

The offence is established if the prosecution can prove beyond reasonable doubt that:

  • You broke into and entered a private property with the owner’s consent
  • You committed a serious indictable offence, for example- larceny or assault.

Defences to this charge

Duress- Where you were threatened or coerced into committing the offence

Necessity- Where you committed break and enter to prevent serious injury or death or another person.

Consent- Where the owner gave you permission to enter the property

Pleading Guilty

It is important that you speak to an experienced criminal defence lawyer who will be able to advise you of your options.

If you decide or have been advised to plead guilty to break and enter after receiving legal advice from an experienced criminal defence lawyer, it is crucial that your case is sufficiently prepared to maximise your chances at obtaining a lenient sentence. 

Utilitarian Value or 25% discount on punishment

The discount for the utilitarian value of the plea of guilty will be determined largely by the timing of your plea entered. That means, the earlier you enter a plea of guilty, the greater discount you receive on your punishment and also the type of sentence you receive.

The utilitarian value of a delayed plea is less and consequently the discount is reduced.

Types of Penalties

Types of penalties the Judge can impose on you include any one of the following:

  • Conditional Release Order
  • Fine

Our expert defence team at Criminal Lawyers Sydney may be able to negotiate the police ‘facts’ to reduce the seriousness of the offence.

Our team will guide you on obtaining materials which can be handed-up to the court during your sentencing – including a letter of apology, character references, and any documents from counsellors or health care professionals you have consulted.

These materials, together with persuasive verbal submissions by your lawyer in the courtroom, can help to ensure you receive the most lenient penalty that is possible in the circumstances.

If you have been charged with break and enter, call Criminal Lawyers Sydney anytime on (02) 91528619 to arrange a free first conference with one of our experienced break and enter lawyers who will review the allegations and advise you of your options and the best way forward.