Frauds by officers

The offence of Fraud by Officers is found in section 596 of the Corporations Act 2001. It is a criminal offence for an officer or employee of a company to fraudulently induce a person to give credit to the company. It also covers acts that intend to defraud a company by stealing its property in various ways.

Have you been accused of Frauds by Officers?

You must get in contact with one of our criminal defence lawyers as soon as you become aware that an ASIC or AFP officer (‘investigator’) wants to interview you. The comments you make during the interview can potentially make it difficult for you to contest the charges later on in Court. You do not want to say anything to an investigator which will harm your case.

The best thing you can do for yourself before attending an interview in relation to an allegation of fraud by officers, is to speak to a lawyer. At Doogue + George Defence Lawyers, our lawyers specialise in defending people accused of wrong-doing and we can offer you sensible strategic advice.

Pleading Not Guilty
If you dispute this allegation, you can take your matter to trial. Our lawyers have dedicated their careers to representing people against allegations in Court. You want someone who is on your side looking after your interests each step of the way.

We take the time to properly analyse the police evidence against you. We then provide you with comprehensive advice about your avenues for defending the charge of fraud by officers. This may include briefing experts to prepare a report or give evidence at Court. With your instructions we develop a strong defence to fight the charge against you.

Pleading Guilty
Pleading guilty to a criminal offence can have long-lasting ramifications on you personally and professionally. You should not make a decision to plead guilty without speaking to one of our experienced defence lawyers first. Our lawyers will look at the brief of evidence to determine if there is a defence available which can be explored. If not, our lawyer will focus on ensuring that the charge an summary reflect your wrong-doing.

Our lawyer will then prepare for the plea hearing by gathering mitigating material which will work to reduce your penalty. Our lawyers are experienced Court advocates and know what material a judge should receive to assist in arriving at a penalty which is not crushing.

Examples of Frauds by Officers
  • An employee of a company lies to a potential investor about the productivity of a company in order to get credit from the potential investor.
  • An employee of a company transfers company property into their private trust.
  • There was no fraud.
  • There was no intent to defraud.
  • There was no inducement.
  • Permission was granted for the conduct.
There are other possible defences, depending on the circumstances surrounding the alleged offending. Each matter is unique and requires an individual approach and strategy.

Questions in cases like this
  • Did you obtain credit for your company through deception?
  • Did you take property from your company that you were not entitled to?
Court that deals with this charge
Fraud by officers (s596 of the Corporations Act 2001) is generally heard in the Federal Magistrates’ Court.

What can you be sentenced to for this charge?
If found guilty for this offence you are likely to incur a fine. However, depending on the extent of the fraud, you may get imprisonment in severe cases.

What is the legal definition of Frauds By Officers?
To prove this offence, the Prosecution must show that the accused was an employee or officer of a corporation, that the accused fraudulently induced another person to give credit to the corporation, or that the accused defrauded the corporation by removal or transfer of company property after or within 2 months before the date of an unsatisfied judgement against the corporation, or by causing a charge or levying of any execution against property of the corporation.

“Did you steal anything from your company?”

The section that covers this offence is section 596 of the Corporations Act 2001.