DCCC755 & 1208/2009 (CONS)
IN THE DISTRICT COURT OF THE
HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMINISTRATIVE REGION
CRIMINAL CASE NO. 755 AND 1208 OF 2009 (CONS)
Reasons for Sentence
1. This is the reasons for D1 only. D1 pleaded guilty to a charge of Burglary.
The facts of the case
2. On 7 March 2009 at around 9.45 am, PW1 left home and returned home an hour later and found her flat has been burgled. A number ofher personal items and cash had been stolen. She lost HK$600 and RMB 800, a jade ring and four watches and keys. Police were calledand 10 prints were lifted from her premises; two prints lifted from the wardrobe door; and four prints on the drawers of the samewardrobe. They matched with D1’s prints.
3. The neighbour of PW1 also said that he saw an unknown male had been loitering outside PW1’s flat at about 8.30 that morning andsaw him again at 10 am, coming out from PW1’s flat with two other males. The defendant was subsequently arrested.
4. He has five previous convictions. Four records were unrelated offences. The last conviction was in November 2009 and he was sentencedto 36 months for a charge of conspiracy to rob.
5. D1 is now 24 years old. His parents separated 3 years ago and were divorced this year. The defendant lives with his father and hisbrother prior to his remand in jail custody.
6. The defendant turned a new life in 2004 after a number of criminal convictions. He started to work in his father’s company andhe also got a diploma in Interior Design from the Polytechnic University.
7. Subsequently he started his own design firm with his partner in 2007. I was told that his partner took a loan of $600,000 and disappeared.The defendant has to be responsible for this loan.
8. The defendant has repaid half of the loan through the help of his father and a friend but he was unable to pay the balance. He waschased after by debt collectors. I was told the commission of the present offence was due to his financial pressure. In his letter,the defendant told me that his fiancé has left him although they intended to get married this June.
9. The defendant is now very regretful and remorseful for his own conduct and he asks for a chance.
10. Domestic burglary is always a very serious offence. The usual starting point is 3 years. I accept that there is no violence involved,as PW1 was not inside the flat when the burglary took place.
11. At the same time, the facts reveal that someone had been waiting outside PW1’s since 8.30 that morning before the defendant andthe others entered her unit. The target was PW1 as she was an old lady. She is 75 years old , even if she turned around and cameback to her own flat, the defendant and the others were strong enough to subdue her.
12. The fact that the defendant has financial difficulty is never a mitigating factor. In the present case I do not see any mitigatingfactors to depart from the usual 3 years starting point. I adopt a starting point of 3 years and reduce to 2 years to reflect thedefendant’s guilty plea. I also order 1 year to run concurrently to DCC5702009.