Defences


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Sometimes, you may be charged with a criminal offence although you had a good reason to justify your actions. For example, you might be charged with assault even though you were actually acting to protect yourself or your property (known as self-defence).

In these types of situations, you can raise a defence in court to prove that you had a good reason for your actions, and that if it was not for that reason, you would not have committed the crime.

Because the law only aims to punish people whose actions pose a real threat to society, if you prove that you had a legitimate excuse for your actions, you may be acquitted and the charges against you may be dismissed.

However, you won’t just be able to raise a defence out of the blue without any proof. It will be up to you to raise the defence in court and show evidence to prove, on the balance of probabilities (that is, more than 50%) that your version of events is correct.

Because the law in relation to defences is so complex, it’s especially important that you speak to a reputable criminal lawyer who will be able to advise you on whether you can raise a defence.

A good lawyer will take the time to thoroughly examine all the evidence to determine whether you have a valid defence, and, if you do, they will be able to present evidence argue your case persuasively in court to ensure that you have a good chance of being found ‘not guilty.’

There are several different types of defences that you may be able to raise. Some of these are listed below:

Duress

Self Defence

Necessity

Consent

Automatism

Mental Illness

Provocation (Murder ONLY)

Intoxication

Honest and Reasonable Mistake of Fact

Speak to a lawyer

If you feel that you may be able to raise a defence for your actions, it’s important to speak to an experienced criminal lawyer who will be able to thoroughly assess your case and advise whether it is in your interest to raise a defence in court.

Raising a defence is a complex process which requires careful examination of all the evidence in your case. In some cases, it might not be obvious that you had a good reason to justify your actions, however a good lawyer will consider all possible defences. They will work with you to obtain all necessary evidence to support your case, so that they can argue the defence effectively in court.

At Sydney Criminal Lawyers we fight hard for our clients’ liberty. In many cases, we have been successful in having clients acquitted by raising defences in court.

Our lawyers aim to ensure the best outcome in every case, so we invest the time and effort required to carefully examine each case and prepare a strong case to help our clients.

Call us today on our 24 hour number (02) 9261 8881 and speak to us about how we can help you with your case.