If you’ve been charged with a criminal offence, police and prosecutors will attempt to convince you that you do not have support or options available to you. This is not the case. And if you try to explain your situation to police without a criminal lawyer present, it is highly likely that you could make your situation much worse.
The best course of action following criminal charges or an arrest is to seek out an experienced criminal lawyer. This can make or break your case. Here are the situations in which an expert criminal lawyer is absolutely necessary.
In Queensland, offences are broken up into either murder, attempted murder or manslaughter. These are considered to be the most serious types of crimes against a person, and any one of these offences can result in life imprisonment. For this reason, it is imperative to hire a criminal lawyer to fight for a less severe penalty on your behalf.
Even in the case of manslaughter charges, where the offender did not have intent to kill, but did so because of careless or negligent behaviour, penalties can be severe. The lawyers at Guest have extensive experience dealing with cases like these.
Drug offences in Queensland include possession of illegal drugs or drug paraphernalia, supplying, trafficking or producing illegal drugs. Severity of penalties is determined by the type and amount of drugs involved. To give you an idea of potential penalties, possessing large quantities of a schedule 1 drug such as heroine or cocaine can result in up to 25 years imprisonment.
Note that drug possession includes having knowledge of and access to the drug. We’ve written up another article about drug possession charges, and exactly what to do if you’re charged. Any drug charges should be treated as serious and will require a criminal lawyer.
Driving Under the Influence
Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is treated as a serious offence in Queensland. You should never appear in court for this type of offence without a lawyer unless you are prepared to accept the maximum penalty. In the case of driving under the influence, hefty fines, license disqualification and possible jail time are all possible penalties. However, an experienced criminal lawyer can have these penalties minimised.
Assault and Sexual Assault
Assault is best described as causing physical or mental harm to another person. You do not need to have physically hurt someone to be charged with assault. Even threatening someone, or acting in a way that could be perceived as stalking another person, can be classed as assault.
Penalties are determined based on the seriousness of the assault and the effects on the victim. However, even minor assaults, like a late-night scuffle at a bar, can incur a prison sentence of 7 years. A good criminal lawyer will argue on your behalf to have these penalties reduced, or dropped altogether.
Theft and Fraud
Theft encompasses crimes such as shoplifting, stealing and burglary (breaking into someone’s home to steal). Fraud is a type of theft that involves obtaining goods or money dishonestly. Fraud can include someone obtaining benefits from Medicare or Centrelink through lying about their situation. Theft and fraud can all carry prison sentences upwards of 5 years, making a criminal lawyer completely necessary.
Initial Consultation with a Top Criminal Lawyer Brisbane
The dedicated and experienced criminal lawyers at Guest Lawyers offer initial consultations (including in prisons) to determine how we can best help you. Please get in touch with our lawyers either via Guest Lawyers’ email or by calling (07) 3211 3007.