Would theft of under £1,000 be a summary offence?

Watch
SophieLaw_
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#1
Report Thread starter 7 years ago
#1
"Jamie has been charged with the theft of an £800 laptop from Curry's store in Liverpool"

if the theft is under £1,000 would this be a summary offence and tried at Magistrates Court?
0
reply
Nirgilis
Badges: 14
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#2
Report 7 years ago
#2
Moved to Law help
0
reply
JamesMallow
Badges: 0
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#3
Report 7 years ago
#3
Theft is a triable either way offence, and anything where the value of the theft is at least double the maximum fine of the Magistrate's Court (£5000), it can only be tried in the Crown Court. Because of the low value of the item, it's likely to be tried in the Magistrate's Court, though the defendant will be able to choose which court they'd prefer the case to be heard in.
0
reply
Bar None
Badges: 2
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#4
Report 7 years ago
#4
(Original post by JamesMallow)
Theft is a triable either way offence, and anything where the value of the theft is at least double the maximum fine of the Magistrate's Court (£5000), it can only be tried in the Crown Court. Because of the low value of the item, it's likely to be tried in the Magistrate's Court, though the defendant will be able to choose which court they'd prefer the case to be heard in.
This is not correct. Theft is always triable either way, regardless of the value. It is never the case that the Magistrates' Court must decline to try the case; though in reality for high value thefts they almost always will do.

The Consolidated Criminal Practice Direction Part V.51.7 states that in the case of theft and fraud:

"Cases should be tried summarily unless the court considers that one or more of the following features is present in the case and that its sentencing powers are insufficient.

...

(a) Breach of trust by a person in a position of substantial authority, or in whom a high degree of trust is placed;
(b) Theft or fraud which has been committed or disguised in a sophisticated manner;
(c) Theft or fraud committed by an organised gang;
(d) The victim is particularly vulnerable to theft or fraud, e.g. the elderly or infirm;
(e) The unrecovered property is of high value: [by paragraph V.51.4, at least £10,000]."

(emphasis added)

So unless one of those five features is present (which need not be the feature relating to value of the property) and the Magistrates' sentencing powers are insufficient, they should accept jurisdiction to try the case.

As you say, if the Magistrates' Court accepts jurisdiction then the defendant has a choice over whether he wishes to elect a Crown Court trial.
0
reply
Bar None
Badges: 2
Rep:
? You'll earn badges for being active around the site. Rep gems come when your posts are rated by other community members.
#5
Report 7 years ago
#5
As an addendum to the above, Parliament has now changed the law in this area.

From 13 May 2014 a new offence of low value shoplifting is created by section 176 of The Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.

This offence applies where goods of a value of £200 or less are stolen from a shop by a person purporting to be a potential customer.

In such cases the theft will be a summary only offence, meaning that the magistrates may not decline jurisdiction or commit the case for sentence and that other rules relating to summary only offences will apply.

However, unlike with other summary only offences, the defendant will still be able to elect a crown court trial. If he does so, the offence goes back to being treated as an either way offence.


Posted from TSR Mobile
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

What is your favourite revision method?

Taking notes manually (78)
20.69%
Note taking apps (7)
1.86%
Flashcards (86)
22.81%
Revision guides (19)
5.04%
Past papers (172)
45.62%
Something else (let us know in the thread) (15)
3.98%

Watched Threads

View All
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise