The Bail Act

By Peter Ward

Recently, Parliament has amended the Bail Act with the objective of making it far more difficult for an accused person charged with criminal offences to be released on bail. Traditionally, any person being held in custody was, prima facie, entitled to bail. What is the bail act? The Bail Act…

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What to Look for in a Criminal Lawyer?

By Catherine O’Bryan

Choosing the right Criminal Lawyer for your case can be a difficult task when you are appearing at a Criminal Court for the first time in your life. The right Criminal Lawyer should be one who represents you to achieve the best outcome with the least cost and worry to yourself. Crime and…

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Assault Charges at Dandenong Magistrates' Court

By Catherine O’Bryan

Have you been charged with a Police Assault offence? When you are charged with Assault you will be required to appear at your local Magistrates’ Court to answer Police Criminal Charges. Assaults can happen when in an argument, tempers flare and due to a rush of blood, it is alleged you have crossed t…

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What to do when you receive a police summons?

By Catherine O’Bryan

A Beginners Guide to the Dandenong Magistrates’ Court. The evening started well.…… You were going out for a drink. The evening was mild. It was a Friday night. You had arranged to meet friends for a couple of drinks and dinner then, later, maybe, a nightclub. You had worked hard all week and now it wa…

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Am I at Risk of Going to Prison?

By Peter Ward

The question that has most often been asked of me in my 40 years as a solicitor is, “am I at risk of going to prison?’. Being charged with a criminal offence, subsequently appearing in court, and facing the prospect of imprisonment can be a highly stressful experience. What are the factors that con…

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Mental Impairment: A relevant defence in criminal court cases

By Peter Ward

An accused’s mental state, either at the time of sentencing or at the time of the commission of the criminal offence, can be a significant sentencing factor. A causal relationship between the offending and the impairment is significant for a consideration of the impact on moral culpability and d…

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Supreme Court of Victoria emphasises importance of rehabilitation in sentencing process

By Paul Galbally

In a recent judgment, the Supreme Court of Victoria has emphasised the continued importance of rehabilitation in the sentencing process. By examining the scope of Community Correction Orders, the Court has laid a pathway for the punitive effect of punishment to be satisfied through the use of…

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Managing unpaid fines in the Magistrates Court

By Catherine O’Bryan

Sometimes the pressures and frantic pace of everyday life can be overwhelming and unpaid debts can quickly build up, including but not limited to traffic fines. Traffic fines are initially incurred by way of infringement notices related to tollways, speeding infringements or parking fines. While…

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The importance of seeking criminal law advice prior to being interviewed by the police

By Peter Ward

It is vitally important for people to obtain legal advice prior to being interviewed by police. This is particularly important when people are being interviewed about indictable matters (serious matters). There are normally two varying circumstances leading up to police interview. In one instance…

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