Wilful damage (also known as "Intentional Damage") is an offence under Section 11 of the Summary Offences Act 1981.
You may visit our Index site entitled Summary Offences Act 1981 to access a full overview of the Act and a copy of the Act itself.
Wilful damage is also known as intentional damage. Anyone who commits wilful damage is liable to imprisonment for a term of up to 3 months in prison or a fine not exceeding $1,000. That person must either intentionally damage any property or set on fire any tree or other vegetation.
The Section also states that the fact that the person charged had an interest in the property shall not prevent his act of damage being an offence of intentional or wilful damage if he did it with the intent to defaud or to cause loss to any other person.
This means that you can be guilty of wilful or intentional damage if you damage your own jointly owned property in order to cause a loss to the other joint owner of the property.
The definition of the other person also includes anyone who has a mortgage or a charge over that property.
Accordingly, if you deliberately set on fire your own motor vehicle then, if you owned it outright with no charge over it, then you would not have committed an offence but if there was a charge or a mortgage over it then you would have committed an offence.
The most important part of the offence for you to note is Sub Section 2 of Section 11 of the Act. This Section says that a person does an act intentionally if he or she "does it intentionally or recklessly."
We emphasize the word the word recklessly because many people think initially that an actual intention has to be proved. That is not the case. If an act damages the property and it is done recklessly then an offence has been committed.
What amounts to intention and what amounts to recklessness is a matter for the Court to decide.
If you have not been charged or interviewed by the Police ab
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