This article was written by Michelle Makela - Legal Practice Director

Michelle has over 15 years experience in the legal industry, working across commercial litigation, criminal law, family law and estate planning.  Michelle has been involved in all practice areas of the firm and in her personal practice has had experience in litigation at all levels (state and federal industrial tribunals, the Supreme Court, Court of Appeal, the Federal Court, Federal...

Obtaining Property by False Pretences (NSW)


The maximum penalty for the offence of obtaining property by false pretences is five years imprisonment. The offence is governed by the New South Wales Crimes Act.

Jurisdiction

Where the value of the property charged exceeds $5000, this matter is a Table 1 offence which means that either the DPP or an accused can elect to have the matter dealt with in the District Court. If no election is made it will be dealt with in the Local Court.

Where the value of the property charged does not exceed $5000, this matter is a Table 2 offence which means that the DPP can elect to have the matter dealt with in the District Court. If no election is made it will be dealt with in the Local Court.

What must be proven?

In order for a person to be found guilty of this offence, the court must be satisfied beyond a reasonable doubt that:

  • The accused made either a false pretence of fact, or a wilfully false promise, or a partly false pretence and a partly false promise to some person.
  • The accused knew it to be false.
  • Through means of such pretence (false promise etc) the accused obtained property.
  • With intent to defraud.

The legislation

Section 179 of the Crimes Act states:

Whosoever, by any false pretence or by any wilfully false promise, or partly by a false pretence and partly by a wilfully false promise, obtains from any person any property, with intent to defraud, shall be liable to imprisonment for five years.

If you require legal advice or representation in any legal matter, please contact Armstrong Legal.

WHERE TO NEXT?

If you suspect that you may be under investigation, or if you have been charged with an offence, it is vital to get competent legal advice as early as possible. Our lawyers are highly specialised in criminal law and will be able to guide you through the process while dealing with the various authorities related to your matter.

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