Criminal Defence

WE REPRESENT CLIENTS AT ALL STAGES OF THE CRIMINAL PROCESS, FROM INITIAL REPRESENTATION IN POLICE STATIONS, TO BAIL APPLICATIONS, COMMITTAL HEARINGS, TRIALS AND APPEALS.  WE ARE HERE TO GUIDE YOU THROUGH THE LEGAL SYSTEM AND ENSURE THAT YOU RECEIVE THE BEST POSSIBLE OUTCOME.

We service all areas of criminal law, including, but not limited to:

Fraud & Dishonesty offences


Fraud Offences There are a large number of fraud type offences afforded in Queensland Legislation, and a fraud offence can be committed in a number of different ways. The introduction of pay wave and pay pass technology has resulted in an increased number of fraud offences being committed in recent times. Queensland Courts have considered it important to protect an individual’s personal property, and those people who are convicted of dishonesty type offences often receive significant penalties. The greater the amount of money involved in the alleged fraud, the more likely it is the Court will impose a more substantial penalty. Property Offences There are a large number of offences that are classified as property offences in Queensland. Property offences include:

  • Unlawful use of a motor vehicle;
  • Enter premises and commit indictable offence;
  • Stealing;
  • Robbery;
  • Burglary and commit indictable offence; and
  • Unlawful taking of shop goods.
These offences share the common characteristic that they often involve taking another person’s property in circumstances where you are not entitled. The offences differ in terms of seriousness, and can range from good behaviour bonds being imposed to periods of actual imprisonment for first time offenders charged with more serious offences (burglaries and robberies).




Bail


Bail Applications

An individual who is charged with a criminal offence can be charged in a number of different ways. An individual may be issued with a Notice to Appear, requiring them to attend Court on a nominated day, or in more serious examples, they may be processed through a police watch-house, refused watch-house bail and be required to appear in Court.

In the event that the police do not grant an individual bail, the person is brought before a Magistrate, whereby an application for bail can be made before the Magistrates Court (except in unique circumstances, such as the applicant defendant being charged with murder). An application for bail is often one of the most important aspect of an individual’s legal proceeding – if bail is refused by a Magistrate, a person could potentially be remanded in custody for a lengthy period of time whilst the matters remain outstanding.

It is important that an application for bail is properly conducted. An individual is not given an infinite number of opportunities to make an application for bail, and once an application for bail is refused, it is often difficult to make a further application (especially where there hasn’t been a material change in circumstance).

Our team of lawyers have significant experience in applying for bail on an accused person’s behalf, no matter what charges they are facing.

On certain occasions, an individual can make an application for bail in the Supreme Court of Queensland. An application for bail in the Supreme Court of Queensland adopts a vastly different form to how an application for bail takes place in the Magistrates Court.

Supreme Court Bail Applications

Supreme Court Bail Applications can be made in a number of different circumstances, but most commonly occur in circumstances where an individual is charged with murder, or in circumstances where an individual has been refused bail by a Magistrate. A Supreme Court bail application is a separate proceeding to the substantive criminal charges before the Court.

A Supreme Court bail application requires an applicant to prepare a large amount of materials prior to going to Court. This commonly occurs in the form of affidavit material and written outline of arguments. The Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions complete the same process to oppose the Application.

Usually, the Presiding Justice has an opportunity to review the outline of arguments and any supporting material prior to the matter being heard in Court. Written submissions can be supplemented through oral submissions made by the parties in Court.

Supreme Court Bail Applications are often made where the charges against an accused person are particularly serious. It is not uncommon for an applicant, in the event that they are granted bail, to be subject to very strict conditions as part of their bail undertaking. These conditions can include, but are not limited to, conditions that require an individual to report to a police station, conditions requiring an individual to reside at a certain address, conditions requiring the applicant to surrender their passport, and conditions that the applicant have no contact with any witnesses and/or the complainant.

The Bail Act contains the relevant provisions the Court will take into account in determining whether or not an individual should be granted bail. The Bail Act outlines that in some circumstances, the default position of the Court should be that the person should be granted bail, unless it can be demonstrated that their continued detention in custody is justified. In other circumstances, a person may be classified as being in a show cause position, and the Courts in those circumstances will adopt the view that the applicant should be refused bail, unless they can demonstrate that their detention in custody is no longer justified.




Commonwealth Based Offences


The majority of offences committed in Queensland are charged by the Queensland Police Service. There are, however, a large number of offences that are classified as Commonwealth offences, including, but not limited to the following:

  • Social security/Centrelink fraud;
  • Using a telecommunications service to menace, harass, or cause offence;
  • Tax based offences;
  • Falsifying identification for constitutional flights or to obtain carriage service offences;
  • Importation of illicit items, including drugs, firearms, and sexual material; and
  • Offences against children.
Although Commonwealth Offences can be finalised in the Queensland Courts, the laws pertaining to these types of offences is vastly different to the legislation governing Queensland based offences. For example, in order to receive the benefit of no conviction being recorded for a Commonwealth Offence, a particular sentence must be imposed by the Courts, whereas the discretion as to whether or not a conviction is recorded is much wider for Queensland charges. Proceedings of a Commonwealth Offence often require a legal practitioner to have much closer regard to the conflicting sentencing principles and often a greater level of preparation is required to help ensure the best outcome is achieved for a particular individual. Creevey Russell Lawyers has expertise in representing individuals facing all types of Commonwealth based charges, and can work closely with you to help achieve the best outcome for your particular circumstance. Creevey Russell Lawyers will not take short-cuts, and give you comprehensive advice to ensure your interests are being properly protected.




Sexual Based / Child Exploitation Offences


Sexual based offences

There are a wide variety of sexual offences that are contained in various pieces of legislation. The penalties imposed for those convicted of sexual offences, due to their nature, can often be very serious.

Sexual based offences include:

  • Rape;
  • Sexual assault;
  • Indecent treatment of children;
  • Maintaining a sexual relationship with a child; and
  • Grooming

Sexual offences are common matters that come before the court. On many occasions, a complaint is not made by an individual until a lengthy period of time has elapsed after the alleged incident. On other occasions, there may be an absence of any independent evidence to help support the version of events being complained of, resulting in a word-against-word situation arising.

Although there is often an absence of independent evidence, offences of this nature are often difficult to successfully defend, and it is important that highly experienced legal representation is obtained early in the proceedings, as there are a number of critical decisions that need to be made from the outset to ensure that an accused person’s interests are being properly protected. In these types of matters, an individual should obtain considered legal advice prior to them deciding whether or not they will participate in an electronic record of interview with police. An accused person should also be aware of other investigative techniques that are available to police in an attempt to strengthen the evidence against them.

Our office understands the importance of providing detailed representation at all stages throughout these types of proceedings. As outlined, the consequences that can potentially flow if an individual is convicted of a sexual based offence can be quite significant and long lasting. If you find yourself in this position, please contact our team to confidentially discuss your matter in greater detail.
Possession of child exploitation material

Child exploitation type offences involve an individual unlawfully possessing, producing, or distributing child exploitation materials. What constitutes child exploitation material, however, is quite broad, and can range from videos of actual children being exposed to cartoon images. The courts have recognised the need to protect children from being exposed in this manner, and the penalties imposed on people who are convicted of these offences often involve terms of imprisonment.

A number of important tactical decisions need to be considered in these types of proceedings. In addition to the substantive penalty, people who are convicted of these types of offences may also find themselves being a reportable offender, requiring them to comply with additional reporting obligations following them being sentenced.

If you find yourself in this position, please do not hesitate to contact our office so that we can provide you with tailored advice as to how to best protect your interests in relation to these proceedings.




Assault and offences of violence


Assault Offences In Queensland, there are a large number of different offences broadly categorised as assault type offences. These offences include:

  • Assault/obstruct a police officer;
  • Common assault;
  • Assault occasioning bodily harm;
  • Serious assault;
  • Grievous bodily harm; and
  • Malicious acts with intent (also referred to as grievous bodily harm with intent).
There are a large number of defences that may be available to an individual who has been charged with an assault type offence, and it is important that considered legal representation is obtained to ensure your interests are being properly protected. It is important to note that a common assault offence can be committed in circumstances where there is no physical contact with another individual, and a threat to cause harm can sometimes be sufficient. The distinction as to what offences are categorised as common assault, assault occasioning bodily harm, and grievous bodily harm often comes down to the injuries sustained by the other party. In order for an individual to be charged with grievous bodily harm, a certain type of injury must be sustained by the victim, namely the victim must have received an injury that, if left untreated, would have caused permanent disfigurement or death. In order for an individual to be convicted with an offence of malicious act with intent, prosecutions must prove that the defendant intended to inflict grievous bodily harm on the victim. An offence of grievous bodily harm does not require this intention, as it is the result of the actions, rather than the intention, that is taken into account. Serious assault is a separate category of offending that does not fall within the usual hierarchy. An individual may be charged with serious assault if any of the following characteristics are present in the offence:
  • The assault is on a police officer;
  • The assault is on a person aged over 60;
  • The assault is on a disabled person; and
  • The assault occurs whilst an individual is in custody.
Homicide Offences Homicide involves the death of an individual. Queensland Legislation provides for two main offences for homicide – murder and manslaughter. Murder is regarded as a most serious offence, and attracts periods of life imprisonment for those who are convicted. In order for an individual to be deemed guilty of murder, prosecutions must establish:
  • That there is an unlawful killing;
  • The defendant’s actions caused (meaning substantial or significant cause) the death; and
  • The defendant intended to cause death or grievous bodily harm
The main distinction between murder and manslaughter is the element of intent. If prosecutions are unable to prove this element, an individual may be acquitted of murder, but convicted of manslaughter. There are a number of full and partial defences available to an individual who is charged with either of the two offences. Given the potential consequences, it is important that representation is obtained early to ensure your interests are being properly protected.





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Phone: 07 3009 6555

Fax: 07 3009 6599
Email: brisbane@crlawyers.com.au
Address: Level 24 , 300 Queen Street
PO Box 10091 BRISBANE QLD 4000 AUSTRALIA

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Fax:  07 4617 8788
Email: toowoomba@crlawyers.com.au
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