What is Disguise with Intent?

Written by Jerry Steele

Criminal Defence

What is Disguise with Intent?

Written by Jerry Steele

Criminal Defence
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For more than 20 years, Steele Law has successfully guided individuals and business entities through the unique challenges posed by criminal and regulatory investigations, as well as prosecutions in state and federal courts nationwide.
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Disguise with intent is an interesting and often controversial aspect of criminal law. It involves using any disguise, whether a mask, costume, or other false identity, with the intention to commit a crime. This crime is often associated with break-and-enter offences, as individuals may use disguises to conceal their identities while committing such crimes.

Understanding Disguise with Intent

Here’s how the Canadian Criminal Code defines it:

(“2) Every person who, with intent to commit an indictable offence, has their face masked or coloured or is otherwise disguised is guilty of

  • (a) an indictable offence and liable to imprisonment for a term of not more than 10 years; or
  • (b) an offence punishable on summary conviction.”

In simpler terms, if someone wears a disguise with the intention of committing an offence, they can be charged and potentially face up to 10 years in prison. This shows how seriously the law takes this behaviour and emphasizes the importance of seeking legal advice if you have been charged with disguise with intent.

Examples of Disguise with Intent

There are many ways in which someone might disguise themselves with intent to commit a crime. 

Some common examples include:

  • Wearing a mask while breaking and entering into someone’s home
  • Dressing up in a police or security guard uniform to gain access to restricted areas
  • Pretending to be someone else, such as a delivery person or repair technician, to gain entry into a building or home
  • Using a fake ID to obtain goods or services under someone else’s name
  • Wearing a disguise during a robbery or theft

These are just a few examples, and there are countless ways in which someone might use disguise with intent to commit an offence. Please note that even if the crime itself is not successful, simply wearing a disguise with the intention to commit a crime is enough to be charged under this section of the Criminal Code. 

Defences for Disguise with Intent

If you have been charged with disguise with intent, several defences may apply in your case:

  • Lack of intent: If your BC defence lawyer can prove you didn’t intend to commit an offence while wearing a disguise, you may be able to avoid conviction.
  • Mistake of fact: If you mistakenly believed you were not breaking the law by wearing a disguise, this may also serve as a defence.
  • Duress: If someone forced or threatened you into wearing a disguise and committing an offence, this can also be a defence in court.

Fight Your Charges with Jerry Steele

Call Jerry Steele now at 778-700-0012 if you’ve been charged with disguise with intent, breaking and entering, or any other criminal charges. With years of experience defending clients in court in cases like the ones described above, Jerry Steele has earned a reputation as one of the province’s most respected criminal defence lawyers.