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what the law says about possession of stolen property creevey horrell lawyers

In Queensland, laws regarding stolen property are governed by the Summary Offences Act, particularly Section 16, which addresses the offence of unlawfully possessing suspected stolen property.

The law says that individuals can be charged if it is reasonably suspected that the property in their possession has been stolen or obtained unlawfully.

Unlawful Possession Stolen Property In the Eyes of the Law

Unlawful possession of stolen property comes into play when the rightful owner of the property cannot be identified, and circumstances suggest that the property has been unlawfully obtained.

It can be considered a ‘complementary offence’ to more serious crimes, such as stealing and receiving stolen goods, as outlined in the Criminal Code.

Penalties and Consequences

According to Queensland law, the maximum penalty for this offence is 20 penalty units or 1 year of imprisonment.

Burden of Proof and Potential Defences

The prosecution bears the onus of proving beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused unlawfully possessed the suspected stolen property.

However, various defences may be invoked to challenge the charges, including:

  • lack of possession;

  • absence of reasonable suspicion;

  • lawful excuse; or

  • honest and reasonable conduct in relation to the item.

Seeking Legal Assistance

Given the complexities involved in cases of stolen property, seeking guidance from experienced legal professionals is highly recommended.

Qualified criminal defence lawyers can provide invaluable support and representation for individuals facing charges related to stolen property. They can offer personalised advice tailored to the specifics of each case and help clients navigate the legal process effectively.

By staying informed about their rights and seeking assistance from knowledgeable legal professionals, individuals can protect their interests and ensure fair treatment under the law.

Contact Creevey Horrell Criminal Lawyers

Based in Brisbane, Roma, Toowoomba, and Townsville. Visit to contact us today.


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