Criminal Offences FAQs

Home Criminal Offences FAQs

Criminal Offences FAQs

On this page:

·Can Police Arrest You for Questioning?

·What To Do If You Are Arrested - or A Suspect

·What is a Buccal Swab?

·Should I obtain Character References?

·Can Mental Health Issues Impact on How A Case is Run?

Can Police Arrest for Questioning?

Definitely not. Police can arrest you if they believe on reasonable ground that you have committed an offence – however they may NOT arrest you for the purpose of questioning.

Police might ask that you accompany them to a police station for questioning – however, if you are not under arrest, you are not obliged to go with them and you are not obliged to answer any of their questions (you may have a positive duty to answer questions for a limited type of case such as certain traffic matters, or if you are the owner/custodian of a motor vehicle involved in certain types of offences – police must tell you if you have a legal obligation to answer their questions).

We advise you not to answer any questions until such time that you have spoken to one of our specialist criminal lawyers.

If in any doubt, contact our Sydney office or our Parramatta office immediately 24/7.

What To Do If You Are Arrested - or A Suspect

The first thing to do is seek immediate specialist advice – preferably from an accredited criminal law specialist – call our 24/7 urgent advice line.

It is essential that you receive advice so that you can decide whether to take part in an interview or answer any questions and to know what your rights are. You have a right to silence. You have a right to speak with a lawyer.

Typical advice upon arrest for this type of matter would be not to take part in an interview without legal advice or to answer police questioning – similarly if you are under suspicion you really should seek advice as a matter of urgency.

Police may attempt to conduct a forensic procedure, if you are a suspect in custody. This could involve taking a buccal swab or some other procedure. You should obtain advice and the police must afford you the oppoprtunity of seeking advice.

If you are a suspect for a sexual assault, contact our Parramatta office or Sydney office for advice prior to speaking with police. We can attend the police station with you to protect your rights, advise you of your rights, explain the procedures, and if necessary apply for bail and represent you when the matter is in Court.

Our criminal law specialists and accredited specialist in criminal law can be contacted 24/7 for urgent legal advice. The offences for sexual assault include lengthy gaol sentences. Standard non-parole periods may apply. Don’t take risks with your future – call our Sydney office or Parramatta office immediately of follow the prompts on our website.

What is a Buccal Swab?

A buccal swab is a painless means of taking a DNA sample from a suspect. If you are a suspect in custody, police have rights under the law to take a DNA sample by means of a buccal swab – subject to strict compliance including approval by an appropriate senior officer. Failure to comply can result in a sample being taken by force by removing strands of hair – which can be unpleasant and unnecessary.

If you are in custody and police want to take a buccal swab, seek legal advice from one of our criminal lawyers immediately.

Should I obtain Character References?

Yes. We provide a character reference advice and personally check the content of all references before they are used in Court. Character references can have a significant positive impact on the outcome of the case.

Can Mental Health Issues Impact on How A Case is Run?

Yes. Sometimes a client is mentally ill and unfit to plead – in other words, they have a mental impairment which would not allow them to have a fair trial. Psychiatric proof is required to establish that they are unfit to stand trial. Both the Crown and the Defence have the opportunity of obtaining this specialist medical evidence.

If you need advice from a criminal defence lawyer, contact one of our criminal law specialists immediately at either our Sydney or our Parramatta offices. Call 1800 NOT GUILTY or fill in our contact form on this page and arrange a free conference with a solicitor today. Contact our specialists right now! 24-hour legal advice 7 days a week.

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