Parramatta Criminal Lawyers
Takchi & Associates criminal lawyers in Parramatta can assist with a range of criminal law matters including:
- Driving and traffic offences including drink driving offences
- Computer-related crime
- Violence (including domestic violence offences)
- Drug offences
- Firearm or dangerous weapon offences
- Murder or manslaughter
- Sexual offences
- Fraud offences
Driving and traffic offences
Driving offences in New South Wales are largely dealt with by fines and demerit points. However, if you commit a more serious traffic offence, such as speeding by more than 30km/hr over the speed limit, negligent driving, or driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol, you might be issued a Court Attendance Notice (CAN).
Facing a serious traffic offence can be distressing. The likelihood of losing your driver’s licence, incurring other penalties, and having a criminal conviction recorded, can have a huge impact on your career, livelihood, and family.
If you receive a CAN, your matter will be dealt with by a magistrate in the Local Court, and you will need to enter a plea (guilty or not guilty). If you plead not guilty, the prosecutor will need to prove the offence beyond reasonable doubt to get a conviction. As there are sentencing discounts for the early entry of a guilty plea, it is important to get advice on your matter if you are unsure of how to plead or if you are considering entering a not guilty plea.
If you have been charged with a criminal offence, your matter might be dealt with in the Local Court if it is a less serious matter. Criminal matters heard in the Local Court are referred to as summary offences. If your matter is more serious, it might be dealt with in the District Court. Some matters can be heard in either the Local or District Court. If a matter is in the District Court or Supreme Court, it is dealt with ‘on indictment’.
The Supreme Court of NSW only deals with the most serious criminal offences of murder, treason, and piracy.
The court process can be confusing, and the outcome of your criminal law matter can be improved by obtaining dependable, timely advice. Our criminal lawyers in Parramatta recommend getting in contact with us immediately after any allegations are made or CAN issued.
Meeting with our Parramatta criminal lawyers
The most appropriate way to respond to a charge depends on a range of factors – the seriousness of the offence, the events surrounding the incident, whether the accused person has a criminal history and, participation in rehabilitation and pre-sentencing programs, if relevant.
You should have all relevant documents with you at the first meeting with your lawyer – the CAN, the full charge and fact sheet, the breath analysis or blood test for PCA or DUI charges, a copy of your traffic history (available from Roads and Maritime Services) and prior criminal records (if relevant).
Our Parramatta criminal solicitors will discuss the charges and applicable penalties and the best way to represent you in court.
Going to Court and sentencing
If you are found guilty of an offence, or you have pleaded guilty, you will be sentenced by a court according to the Crimes (Sentencing Procedure) Act. If your matter is being heard in the Local Court and you are found guilty, the longest prison term a magistrate may sentence you to for each offence is two years. If you are sentenced in a higher court, the highest sentence that may be imposed is outlined in the Crimes Act 1900 (NSW). A court may also choose to dismiss a matter, even though you have been found guilty, or impose a suspended sentence with a good behaviour bond.
In deciding what is an appropriate sentence, a court will consider ‘aggravating’ and ‘mitigating’ factors. These factors help a judge or magistrate to make a finding about how serious your offence was compared to other offences of the same type. Usually, a person found guilty will have some evidence to give to a judge or magistrate that may be considered in sentencing. What sort of evidence is appropriate depends on the charges and the outcome that is sought.
No two cases are alike and various factors are considered before advising on the most appropriate manner in which to put forward a case to the court. Matters to be considered include:
- details of your character, work history and family circumstances including involvement in the community
- whether there are medical issues relevant to the offending behaviour or other plausible reasons for having committed the offence
- your reliance on a driver’s licence for work or other reasons such as a need for ongoing medical treatment, and the impact the loss of a licence has or will have on your future
- whether you have prior criminal convictions
Our lawyers are experienced in all criminal and traffic law matters. We will provide essential guidance and support, give you reasonable expectations, set out your options, and put forward the best case possible on your behalf.
If you need assistance, contact one of our traffic and criminal lawyers in Parramatta at [email protected] or call (02) 9687 7933 for expert legal advice.