Pleading Not Guilty
Before you can be found guilty of possessing a forged document, the prosecution must prove that you committed the offence.
There are four circumstances in which you can be charged with possessing a forged document:
- Where you have a document in your possession which you know has been forged, and you intend to use it to induce a Commonwealth public official to accept it as genuine, and, if that person accepts it, to dishonestly obtain a gain, cause a loss or influence the exercise of a public duty or function.
- Where you have a document in your possession which you know has been forged, and you intend to use it to dishonestly cause a computer, machine or electronic device to accept the document as genuine in order to dishonestly obtain a gain, cause a loss or influence the exercise of a public duty or function in connection with the operations of a Commonwealth entity.
- Where you have a Commonwealth document in your possession which you know has been forged, and you intend to use it to induce another person to accept it as genuine, and, if that person accepts it, to dishonestly obtain a gain, cause a loss or influence the exercise of a public duty or function.
- Where you have a Commonwealth document in your possession which you know has been forged, and you intend to use it to dishonestly cause a computer, machine or electronic device to accept the document as genuine in order to dishonestly obtain a gain, cause a loss or influence the exercise of a public duty or function.
If you do not believe that the prosecution will be able to prove that your actions constituted any of these offences, you may wish to plead “not guilty” and have one of our highly experienced criminal lawyers defend your innocence in court.
Our lawyers have considerable experience fighting and winning complex Commonwealth fraud matters and can give you the best possible defence when it comes to fighting the charges in court.
We will obtain all relevant evidence and present your case in the most compelling light in order to maximise your chances of being found “not guilty.”
Our experienced advocates will work alongside leading criminal defence barristers to strategically examine all witnesses.
We can also identify any defences that may be raised to secure a verdict of “not guilty.”
Examples of defences that may be used include:
- Where you were threatened or coerced into possessing a forged document (duress);
- Where you honestly and reasonably believed that the document was not forged honest and reasonable mistake of fact.
Our lawyers have extensive experience winning these types of cases in court and can give you the best possible advice on how to fight the charges in your case.
In some situations, you may not wish to fight the charges in court.
In these cases, you may choose to plead “guilty” to the charges.
This means that you will proceed straight to sentencing for your penalty to be determined by the court.
This can often be a beneficial option as it will show to the court that you have accepted responsibility for your actions. Accordingly, the court may be more likely to impose a lenient penalty.
This also means that you will avoid the time and expense of a defended hearing or criminal trial to determine your guilt.
However, before pleading guilty, it is strongly advised that you speak to one of our experienced criminal defence lawyers who will be able to advise you on whether there is any way to fight the charges and escape a conviction.
You should also be aware of the maximum penalty for this offence, which is 10 years’ imprisonment.
However, this is the absolute maximum and will only apply in the most serious cases.
The court will ultimately determine the appropriate penalty after considering all the facts and circumstances of your case.
The types of penalties that the court can impose include:
- Good behaviour bond
- Community service order
- Intensive correction order
- Home detention
- Suspended sentence
- Full-time imprisonment
If you are considering pleading guilty to “possession of a forged document,” it’s important to ensure that you are being represented by an experienced criminal defence lawyer who can present your side of the story in the most effective and compelling manner.
Our lawyers are highly skilled at presenting persuasive sentencing submissions which highlight the importance of a lenient penalty.
Our hard work and dedication is reflected in our unparalleled ability to obtain outstanding results in these cases.
If you’ve been charged with a Commonwealth fraud offence, the best first step to take is to enlist the assistance of a criminal defence lawyer who has considerable experience fighting and winning these types of matters.
At Sydney Criminal Lawyers, we specialise exclusively in criminal law and have extensive experience fighting and winning these types of cases.
Unlike other law firms, we dedicate the time and effort to ensure that matters are dropped at an early stage where possible.
This involves our lawyers carefully examining all the evidence to identify problems in the prosecution case – where issues are found, we can write to the prosecution requesting that the charges be dropped on this basis.
However, should your matter proceed to court, you can rest assured that our lawyers will work relentlessly to secure a verdict of “not guilty.”
We guarantee that you will be represented in court only by our experienced senior lawyers.
Our senior lawyers are skilled advocates who have been recognised for their outstanding advocacy skills, as well as their in-depth knowledge of the law.
They will work alongside leading criminal defence barristers to cast doubt on the prosecution case by dismantling all incriminating evidence and witnesses who may have a negative impact on your case.
Our lawyers can also assist if you wish to plead guilty by preparing compelling sentencing submissions which emphasise the need for a lenient penalty.
Our lawyers regularly make persuasive sentencing submissions and frequently obtain results that are better than any other law firm.
For the best result in your “possession of a forged document” case, get our experts on your side.
Call us today on (02) 9261 8881 and book a FREE first conference with our experienced advocates.