Malicious Damage of Property

The offence of destroying or damaging property is generally dealt with in the Local Court. Because it is a tabled offence, it is possible to have this matter dealt with on indictment in the District Court before a jury.

Malicious Damage of Property can be defined as intending to cause damage to the property, or an intending to destroy it. Damage can mean defacing, marking, removing the property or even causing it to be broken. It can be as simple as kicking a door or punching a wall. The damage does not have to be permanent.

The intention behind damaging the property can be either reckless or intentional. If you are reckless with your intention, you would have regard to the potential damage you could have caused to the property, but continued in your actions.

The penalty of this offence can range from 12 months imprisonment, to up to 12 years.

If you have been charged with malicious damage, the prosecutor will need to prove:

  1. The damage or destruction of the property was caused by you
  2. The property was owned by another person or co-owned by you and another person
  3. The intention of causing the damage (it cannot be an accident) beyond a reasonable doubt.