Criminal Offences

Making a False Statement

In any matter that involves a criminal investigation, it is not unusual for the police to rely on the information given by the members of the public. While this can prove immensely helpful to the police in urgent situations, there are times when the information they receive is actually false. It goes without saying that the core responsibility of the police department is to take any information it receives about criminal activities with utmost seriousness.

Depending on the information that has been received, the police conducts criminal investigations, which involve the expenditure of public resources. And therefore, a person may be charged with an offence of “public mischief” if they make a false representation or statement before the police about any act or event that has or will occur. It is also an offence when false statements of such severity are shared with some other member of the public, and if that member ultimately conveys those statements to a police officer. In such a case, the offence will be charged against the person who acted as the original source of wrongful information.

Public Mischief of “making false statement” is a summary offence under Section 547B of Crimes Act 1900, and involves significant penalties as explained in the section below.

If you or someone you know has been charged with “making a false statement” under the offence of Public Mischief, then it is advisable that you contact an expert criminal defence lawyer to get you through this legal issue. You can easily find some of the best ones at

Benjamin Leonardo – The Defenders, is a leading criminal law firm in Sydney. Book a consultation today for reliable and honest legal advice regarding your penalty options in this offence or in any other criminal offence.


Public Mischief of “making a false statement” to the police is recognised as a summary offence in the Legislation. A conviction against this charge in the Local court attracts a maximum penalty of 12 months of imprisonment and/or a fine of $5,500.

However, imprisonment should generally be a last resort before the Court. Especially for the first time offenders, there are less severe, alternative penalties available like Good Character, Greater Remorse, Community Service, Home Detention order, a Fine, or a Bond.

Book a confidential consultation with us today for expert legal advice regarding your penalty options if you are guilty of “making a false statement” to the police.


Should you plead guilty to the offence of “making a false statement”, the police should prove the following before a magistrate in the Local Court beyond a reasonable doubt:

  • You made a false representation or false statement about a certain act or event that would or did occur.
  • Your false statement ended up costing police its valuable time and resulted in the expenditure of public resources.
  • If not a direct source to the police, you were the first person who conveyed the wrongful information to the third party who then conveyed it to the police.

Pleading guilty will not open rigorous criminal proceedings against you, and choosing to plead guilty in the first instance will benefit you with less severe penalty options and/or a reduced imprisonment (if imprisonment applies to your case at all).

Serious or not, “making a false statement” is still an offence in the Court and if you have been charged with this accusation, we advise you to contact us to discuss helpful legal tips and penalty options that best apply to your case.


If you decide to plead not guilty in the offence of “making a false statement”, you or your solicitor will have to prove before the Court that you are innocent of the crime, and did not make any false statement, or made an honest mistake, which means you didn’t know that you were partaking in passing a false statement to the police. The prosecution, on the other hand, will do their best to prove that you did, in fact, commit an offence.

To sail through such daunting situations, it is suggested that you have the aid of an expert solicitor on your side, and this is where the role of Benjamin Leonardo – The Defenders comes into play. We are an impressive team of some of the best criminal lawyers in Sydney, fully dedicated to providing you with honest, reliable and workable legal advice.

Book a consultation with us today!


If you have been charged with the accusation of “making a false statement” to the police, your best bet would be to have a legal aid of expert criminal defence lawyers to work out your defence strategies. A couple of such defence strategies that apply to this particular offence include:

Duress: The defence strategy of duress is defined as the unlawful pressure exerted upon an individual to compel the individual, by use of harmful threats and force, to perform an act that under ordinary circumstances, he or she would not perform. Duress also takes into consideration the same harm, threats or restraints applied to any member of the family of the accused.

Necessity: Often confused with duress, necessity, as a defence strategy, signifies that the offence was committed as it seemed absolutely necessary to prevent a greater harm or imminent threat to one’s life. Although difficult to prove in Court, Necessity too is a suitable defence strategy in this case that can help avoid charges.


Under Section 547B Crimes Act, Public Mischief of “making a false statement” is a summary offence. However, it is only a commonly held misconception that summary offences aren’t really criminal offences when the fact remains that they are indeed criminal offences that are dealt before a magistrate in the Local Court.

At Benjamin Leonardo, we understand how dealing with an offence charge in Courts, be it small or big in nature, can be an exhausting legal experience. To support you in your criminal legal battles and ensure you encounter a smooth and simplified process, our the team of experienced and highly capable criminal defence lawyers at Benjamin Leonardo – The Defenders is always present.

Discuss your best legal options if you are charged with the offence of “making a false statement” with us today in a consultation.