What is offence of Break and Enter with Intent?
The offence of Breaking and Entering occurs when a person;
- Breaks and enters into a place with the intent to commit an indictable offence.
- Breaks and enters into a place and does commit and indictable offence.
- Breaks out of a place after committing an indictable offence.
- Breaks out of a place entering that place with the intention to commit an indictable offence.
Where the place broken into is a place of residence, this will be considered an aggravating circumstance which may attract a harsher penalty if you are convicted.
How does the Crown Attorney prove I intended to Commit and Indictable Offence?
Once the Crown Attorney establishes that you did break and enter into a place or you attempted to break and enter into a place, there is a presumption that you had the intent to commit an indictable offence. You may rebut this presumption by providing evidence to the contrary that you did not intend to commit an indictable offence.
What happens if the Crown Attorney can’t prove that I Committed and Indictable Offence or that I intended to commit an Indictable Offence?
You could still be convicted of included offences such as being in possession of stolen property or unlawfully being in a dwelling house. Other offences that you may be charged with include forcible entry and trespassing by night.
What is a considered a Place?
A place includes;
- A dwelling-house / place of residence.
- A building or a structure.
- A railway vehicle, water vessel, aircraft or trailer.
- A pen or enclosure where animals are held.
What are some Defences to Breaking and Entering?
A defence often used to a charge of break and enter is raise evidence to the contrary that a person did not have the required intent to commit an indictable offence.
What is Penalty for Breaking and Entering?
The Criminal Code makes a distinction between breaking and entering into a place of residence and any other place. Where the place is a dwelling-house then the maximum penalty is life imprisonment. Where the place is not a dwelling-house, the maximum penalty is 10 years in jail where the Crown Attorney proceeds by indictment and 6 months in jail where the Crown proceeds summarily.
I have been charged with Breaking and Entering. What should I do?
You should contact a criminal defence lawyer as soon as possible. Break and enter is a very serious criminal offence that can result in a jail sentence if you are convicted.
Call me or email me today if you have been charged with break and enter or you have a quick question. Ask about arranging a free consultation.