Sentencing trends for theft in the higher courts of Victoria

Theft Australia Victoria

This Sentencing Snapshot describes sentencing outcomes for the offence of theft and details the age and gender of people sentenced for this offence in the County and Supreme Courts of Victoria between 2007–08 and 2011–12. Except where otherwise noted, the data represent sentences imposed at first instance.

A person who dishonestly appropriates any property belonging to another person with the intention of permanently depriving that person of the property is guilty of theft.

Theft is an indictable offence that carries a maximum penalty of 10 years’ imprisonment and/or a fine of 1,200 penalty units. Indictable offences are more serious offences triable before a judge and jury in the County or Supreme Court. Theft can also be tried summarily by the Magistrates’ Court if the property involved meets certain criteria, the Magistrates’ Court considers it appropriate and the defendant consents.

Theft was the principal offence in 2.2% of cases sentenced in the higher courts between 2007–08 and 2011–12.

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