Robbery is theft with violence. A person is guilty of robbery if he or she steals and immediately before or at the time of doing so, and in order to do so, uses force on any person or puts or seeks to put any person in fear of being then and there subjected to force.
Robbery requires proof of the elements of theft together with the additional element of force.
The culpable state of mind for theft, i.e. an intention to deprive the owner of the property must be present. The use of force may be intentional or reckless.
The maximum sentence for robbery is life imprisonment.
Conspiracy to rob is a common law offence.
Robbery is aggravated theft. The accused must steal or attempt to steal. The force or threat or force must be used in order to enable the accused to steal.
The victim must be the custodian of the property so as to have sufficient possession and care of it so that the stealing is constituted as being in his presence. Overpowering a security guard who stands between the accused and their objective constitutes robbery.
Any defence available in respect of theft will be available in respect of robbery. # is a defence to robbery although the circumstances may constitute an assault. This is so even if the person has no right to take the thing concerned by violence.
Force has its ordinary meaning. A slight force may be sufficient. It is not necessary that the victim fears the force. The force must be for the purpose of the theft. Therefore, the force must precede or be simultaneous with the theft. Force may be directed at the victim of the crime or a third person. The threat of force to another person would suffice, provided it is for the purpose of the theft.
The force must be used immediately before or at the time of the theft. The use of force after a theft or an escape does not constitute robbery . The force must be used in order to steal. If force is used, an intent to steal arises later, it is not robbery.
The fact that the victim is not actually put in fear does not prevent robbery if the accused intended to put the victim in fear. An accidental use of force is not sufficient.
Force may be to persons or property. Threat or future force is not sufficient. This may constitute a separate offence. The force must be against a person, not property. However, force applied to property held by a person would indirectly constitute force applied to a person.
The tying up of employees followed by their removal and a stealing out of their presence would constitute robbery. It is sufficient that the victim or its agents are aware of the theft who are compelled by force or fear to submit to it. He may be equally prevented by violence or threat, becoming aware of the theft.