Engaging in activities involving identification information constitutes a serious criminal offence, under section 372.1 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth), carrying a maximum penalty of 5 years imprisonment.
For the offence to be established, the prosecution bears the onus of establishing the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt:
1. You were engaged in activities pertaining to identification information.
2. There was specific intention, whether for yourself or another party, to utilise the information to assume the identity of another individual - whether deceased or living, actual or fabricated, with the purpose of committing or facilitating the commission of a Commonwealth indictable offence or a foreign indictable offence.
The term 'identification information' refers to specific details associated with another individual, whether they are currently alive or dead, real or fictitious which can be used to identify a person, either on its own or when combined with other information. This encompasses a range of personal data, such as names, addresses, dates of birth, particulars from driver's licenses or passports, biometric data (such as fingerprints, or facial recognition), financial information, and more.
The term 'dealt in' encompasses a spectrum of activities, including making, supplying, or using such identification information. These actions may include activities such as producing counterfeit documents, sharing or distributing personal data with illicit intent, and gathering information for fraudulent purposes.
Section 372.1 of the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Cth) covers the offence of dealing in identification information.
1. It is an offence if a person (referred to as the first person) engages in dealing with identification information with the intention that any person (referred to as the user), whether the first person or not, will use the identification information to pretend to be, or pass off as, another person (whether living, dead, real, or fictitious) for the purpose of committing or facilitating the commission of an indictable offence under Commonwealth law.
Maximum Penalty: Imprisonment for 5 years.
Note: The term “deal in identification information” includes making, supplying, or using any such information. Refer to section 370.1 for details.
2. Absolute liability applies to the element mentioned in paragraph (1)(c) of the offence.
Note: For absolute liability, see section 6.2.
3. This section applies:
a). Even if:
(i) It is impossible to commit the offence mentioned in paragraph (1)(b); or
(ii) The offence mentioned in paragraph (1)(b) is intended to be committed at a later time.
b). Regardless of whether the person to whom the identification information relates consented to the dealing with the identification information.
(4) This section does not apply to dealing in the first person’s own identification information.
1. “Deal in identification information” includes making, supplying, or using any such information.
2. “Identification documentation” refers to any document or other thing that contains or incorporates identification information and is capable of being used by a person to pretend to be, or pass off as, another person (whether living, dead, real, or fictitious).
3. “Identification information” means information or a document relating to a person (whether living, dead, real, or fictitious) that can be used, alone or in conjunction with other information or documents, to identify or purportedly identify the person. This includes various details such as name, address, date or place of birth, driver’s license, passport, biometric data, credit/debit card details, financial account numbers, digital signatures, series of numbers/letters for personal identification, and an ABN.
The defences available for this offence, include:
An ‘indictable offence’ is a serious criminal act that can be referred to a higher court, such as the District or Supreme Court.
It is crucial to know that the culpability for the offence of dealing with identification information can be established even where the planned indictable offence could not be executed or if the intended offence was deferred to a later point in time. Moreover, the charge can apply even if the individual to whom the identification information belonged had granted consent to its usage.
However, there are defences available for this offence, including duress (where an individual was compelled to engage in such activities under coercion and threat) and necessity (where a person can demonstrate that their actions were driven by a compelling need to prevent a greater harm or danger).
If you are seeking expert legal advice and representation pertaining to matters concerning Dealing in Identification Information, please reach out to our experienced criminal defence lawyers at KPT Defence Lawyers on(02) 9267 5555.
Yes, restitution—requiring the defendant to compensate the victim for financial losses—can be part of a fraud case resolution in NSW.
It’s advisable to consult with a lawyer as soon as you become aware of fraud charges or are contacted by law enforcement. Early legal advice can be crucial in building a strong defence.
Addressing identification information typically refers to activities related to using, creating, or providing false identification information for fraudulent purposes, such as identity theft or fraud schemes.
Penalties may include fines and imprisonment, especially when addressing identification information is linked to broader fraudulent activities.
Earlier this month, our criminal defence lawyer, Ellyse Kwan, represented a client in court facing charges of assault
Recently, our Partner and Accredited Specialist, Paul Blake, appeared at Burwood Local Court for a bail application for
The advancement and sophistication of technology has generated contentious debate about whether robots can displace the jobs of
In 2020 alone, more than 200 Australian’s have collectively paid more than $1.3 million to watch live videos
Buried in the Commonwealth Criminal Code is the lesser-known offence of “Dishonestly cause a risk of loss to
The law in Australia, as in other common law countries, comes from two sources: legislation enacted by parliament
In Queensland, the sex work industry is pointed on the edge of a ground-breaking transformation as the government
The famous slap by Will Smith has been a hot topic of discussion, which exploded over social media