Unlawful Entry of Motor Vehicle

Our experienced criminal law solicitors have prepared a brief overview of the law relating to unlawful entry of motor vehicle.

If you or someone you care about is facing the charge, you need specific advice and should contact Gatenby Criminal Lawyers on 55800120 for advice.

For more information on other similar charges, visit our PROPERTY OFFENCES.

Unlawful Entry of Motor Vehicle – The Law

Section 427 of the Queensland Criminal Code creates the offence of unlawful entry of a motor vehicle. It provides:

(1) A person who unlawfully enters another person’s vehicle with intent to commit an indictable offence commits a crime.

An aggravated offence exists:

(2) If—

(a) the offence is committed in the night; or

(b) the offender—

(i) uses or threatens to use actual violence; or

(ii) is or pretends to be armed with a dangerous or offensive weapon, instrument or noxious substance; or

(iii) is in company with 1 or more persons; or

(iv) damages, or threatens or attempts to damage, any property;

Elements of the offence

To be found guilty of the offence of unlawful entry of a motor vehicle, the prosecution is required to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, the following elements:

  1. The accused enters the vehicle of another person;
  2. The accused had intention to commit an indictable offence.

Maximum penalty

The maximum penalty for the allegation of unlawful entry of a motor vehicle is 10 years imprisonment.

If 1 or more circumstances of aggravation are made out, the accused may be liable for up to 14 years imprisonment.

Jurisdiction – Where will the matter be heard?

The offence of unlawful entry of a motor vehicle is an indictable offence.

The charge will initially be commenced in the Magistrates Court and will be finalised in the District Court.

Conviction – Does a conviction have to be recorded?

The sentencing Court has a discretion whether or not to record a conviction against you for the offence of fraud.  Generally a conviction would not be recorded for a minor first offence for this type of offence, although one is likely for subsequent convictions, or where a circumstance of aggravation is made out.

The relevant factors are set out in section 12 of the Penalties and Sentences Act 1992, and include, the nature of the offence, the offenders character and age, together with the impact the recording a conviction would have on the offenders chances of finding employment. If you are concerned about a conviction being recorded on you or a loved you should seek legal advice.

For specific legal advice you should immediately contact Gatenby Criminal Lawyers on (07) 5580 0120.