Within a short period of time, there have been an unprecedented number of people arrested and charged for offences related to the disorder. Courts and Criminal Defence Solicitors in London and elsewhere have sat through the night in order to accommodate the cases that followed, however not all of these cases have been public order offences as documented by the press; we take a look here at the ‘non public order’ offences that were committed during the recent riots in the UK.
You commit burglary if you enter a building as a trespasser with intent to commit theft, inflict grievous bodily harm or cause unlawful damage, and then steal or attempt to steal something from that building, or inflict grievous bodily harm on any person within the building. It can be tried in both the Magistrates Court and the Crown Court. This offence is aggravated if you are carrying a weapon with you at the time of the burglary. Aggravated burglary can only be tried at the
Crown Court. The maximum sentence for burglary of a dwelling is 14 years imprisonment, and for burglary of a non-dwelling (for example a shop) is 10 years imprisonment. Aggravated burglary carries a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, although as with all cases the maximum sentence is rarely passed.
Criminal Damage: You commit criminal damage if you intentionally or recklessly destroy or damage property belonging to another without a lawful excuse. The damage inflicted does not have to be permanent. This offence is aggravated if someone’s life is put in danger by your actions and you should have foreseen this. This offence can be tried at the Magistrates Court or Crown Court unless either it is aggravated in which case it can only be tried at the Crown Court, or the damage caused is less that £5000 meaning that it can only be tried at the Magistrates Court. The maximum sentence the Crown Court can give is 10 years. The maximum sentence the Magistrates Court can give if the value of the damage is under £5000 is 3 months imprisonment and/or a £2500 fine.
Assault PC: You commit if you cause minor injuries to a Police Officer whilst he is on duty. This offence can only be dealt with in the Magistrates Court and the maximum penalty is 6 months imprisonment and/ or a £5000 fine.