Sec 9 of the theft act 1978 defines the offence of burglary.

Sec 9 of the Theft Act 1968 defines the offence of Burglary. The section is in two parts and it is important to remember that there are two forms of burglary.

Burglary under Sec 9 (1) (a) is committed where;

  • The defendant enters a building or part of one

  • as a trespasser, and

  • with the intent to steal, inflict grievous bodily harm, or do unlawful damage to the building or anything inside it.

Under sec 9 (1) (b) the offence is also committed where;

  • a person steals or inflicts grievous bodily harm on another

  • after he has entered as a trespasser

  • or attempts to do either of these things.

In other words there are two forms of burglary and these need to be properly understood.

In the case of sec 9 (1) (a) burglary, the offender must have formed the intention to steal or commit the other offences at the time he enters unlawfully.

In the case of sec 9 (1)( b )burglary, the intent to steal can be formed after the unlawful entry and covers the opportunist burglar who for example comes across some money when cleaning the premises but can not resist the temptation to steal the money.

Sec 9 (1)( b) burglary only applies to theft and grievous bodily harm and includes attempts to commit either of these offences whereas sec 9 (1)( a) does not.


Burglary | Victim Support

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