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Intention to defraud by destroying or concealing accounting records

Offence title:

 

Intention to defraud by destroying or concealing accounting records

Act:

 

192F Crimes Act (NSW)

Offence:

(1)   A person who dishonestly destroys or conceals any accounting record with the intention of—

(a)   obtaining property belonging to another, or

(b)   obtaining a financial advantage or causing a financial disadvantage,

is guilty of an offence.

(2)   In this section, destroy includes obliterate

Penalty:

 

Imprisonment for 5 years

Summary/Indictable/mixed:

 

Mixed

Jurisdiction:

 

Local, District or Supreme Court

How committed:

 

·       Changing data in an accounting system to pay an invoice that should not have been; or

·       Removing a page from a ledger to hide an unlawful transaction; or

·       Causing a computer to be wiped of all data so the company accounts cannot be reconciled.

Important note:

·      Dishonesty can be present even if there is a willingness to pay;

·      A single count of fraud can encompass a number of transactions;

·      If charged with fraud, but it becomes evident larceny (stealing) is appropriate a person may be convicted of larceny instead and vice versa.

·     To be guilty there must be an intent to permanently deprive the owner.

·     Property belongs to someone if they have possession or control of it, or a proprietary right or interest in it. It can include property in a trust and ownership can be those who have a right to enforce the trust.

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