Money for Nothing, Cheques for Free? The Meaning of 'Financial Advantage' in Fraud Offences

UNSW Law Research Paper No. 2007-58

Melbourne University Law Review, Vol. 31, p. 201, 2007

38 Pages Posted: 29 Jun 2009

See all articles by Alex Steel

Alex Steel

University of New South Wales (UNSW) - Faculty of Law

Date Written: August 28, 2007

Abstract

This article offers a critique of the current understanding of the phrase 'financial advantage' in Australian fraud offences. It begins by considering the history and use of these offences, and ultimately argues that the concept embodied by the phrase is far more complex and uncertain than recent case law suggests. It examines the concept in relation to both the English pecuniary advantage offences and the additional phrase 'any money or any valuable thing' in the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW) s 178BA offence, and contrasts it with offences based on the causing of detriment. It is suggested that discussions of defaulting and penniless debtors in relation to the offence are misguided and that financial advantage can only occur when the accused is placed in a better position as a result of the deception, and the advantage obtained is 'financial' in nature.

Keywords: Australian fraud offences

Suggested Citation

Steel, Alex, Money for Nothing, Cheques for Free? The Meaning of 'Financial Advantage' in Fraud Offences (August 28, 2007). UNSW Law Research Paper No. 2007-58, Melbourne University Law Review, Vol. 31, p. 201, 2007, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1362166

Alex Steel (Contact Author)

University of New South Wales (UNSW) - Faculty of Law ( email )

Kensington, New South Wales 2052
Australia

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