ACT Criminal Law
National Criminal Law
NSW Criminal Law
QLD Criminal Law
VIC Criminal Law
WA Criminal Law
My legal matter concerning an application for a Domestic Violence Order was managed by Mr Thomas Allen. I am grateful for the outcome he obtained. Without Mr Allen and his ongoing support, I would be certain of a different result. It has been an extremely stressful period. Mr Allen’s astute ability to liaise on my behalf and his expertise was invaluable and for which I am grateful as I am now able to move forward. Thanking you
I would like to take this opportunity to thank Armstrong Legal and specifically Mr Thomas Allen for representing me in my recent case. At the outset, I would like to thank Mr Allen for the very professional delivery of his legal service. From the first time that I met Mr Allen, I was very impressed with his demeanour and delivery as he made me feel at ease knowing the severity of my case. Mr Allen not only gave me the possible positive outcomes of the case but also the realisation of the worst-case scenario as far as sentencing goes. … I will certainly be recommending Armstrong Legal to any of my friends or family needing representation in criminal matters. Thank you so very much.
Thank you for your representation and help. Fingers crossed for the next step and parole. I just want to say that from the first phone call to your office, your service has been outstanding and have put my mind at ease. I am glad I picked your number to ring.
Thank you Armstrong Legal, the lawyers that have helped over the past 3 years but more importantly, thank you to Thomas Allen for the major part you and Mr Buckland played. Cannot thank you enough. Cheers.
Hi all. I would like to thank Ms Lisa Riley for all her help with my legal issues this past month. It was the most harrowing experience of my life and thanks to her expertise, professionalism and knowledge of the law, I came out almost unscathed. I have no hesitation in recommending Lisa Riley and Armstrong Legal if you need help. The service is amazing and the cost was very minimal for the great outcome. Thank you Lisa for helping me in the most difficult time.
I just want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. My whole life I was thrown away, you made me feel like I did mean something. I could not have asked for a better lawyer. Your compassion and love for your job is inspiring. Your upfront and honesty were muchly appreciated, you are a beautiful person. Thank you for not giving up on me and thank you for all the work you put in. I wish you all the best for the future and I will be recommending you to everyone I know. You're amazing!!!!
I just wanted to thank you for representing me on Monday, I was overjoyed & relieved with the outcome. I don’t think it could have gone any better. All the best, I hope you got to celebrate this one instead after work, you forever made a difference in my life.
I know I thanked you before we parted company but please allow me to reiterate in writing my sincere deepest thanks for defending me in court today. … Armstrong Legal certainly has a great Lawyer you are a credit to the company and I'm quite sure you will secure a very successful future! … My Kindest Regards and Thanks
Throughout Angela has been the consummate professional. She maintained a calm, yet strong demeanour remained informative and completely open in her communication and took complete ownership of the situation. We felt confident we finally had an advocate to steer us out of the nightmare we were in, and she did so with great respect and sincerity. I cannot speak more highly of Angela. She has literally rescued our family from what looked very much like a hopeless future.
Words can’t describe how grateful I am to Trudie Cameron being my solicitor and to Andrew Tiedt presenting my case in the court. They both have been very supportive and amazingly professional and effective. I’ve got an absolutely fantastic outcome I couldn’t even dream about.
Soon after meeting Andrew I knew he was the solicitor I wanted to handle my matter. He immediately sprang into action which brought me stability and hope during a tumultuous time in my life. Andrew was never afraid to give me straight answers to my tough questions which is a true mark of integrity. He is clearly at ease in the court environment and I believe his calm and measured demeanour went a long way to helping me secure the best result from my day in court. I would certainly recommend you approach Andrew if you need assistance.
"Andrew Tiedt was very professional and considerate to personal circumstances and gave sound advice that resulted in the best outcome possible. Highly recommended."
The Defence of Duress
The defence of duress is available in relation to almost all criminal offences. However, it is rarely raised and even more rarely succeeds. It can be argued where the offence was committed only because the accused was put under enormous pressure to commit the offence and believed that they or someone else would be seriously harmed or killed if they did not comply.
What must be proven?
To make out the defence of duress, the accused must call evidence establishing the following:
- that an actual threat of death or serious injury was made to the accused or another person,
- that the threat was of such gravity that a person of ordinary firmness of mind and will, and of the same sex and maturity as the accused, would have yielded to the threat in the way that the accused did, and
- that the accused acted as they did because of the threat which was still acting on their mind at the time of the criminal act.
For such a threat to be effective it must be continuing and be seen to be continuing and a threat will not be seen to be continuing and effective if the accused had a reasonable opportunity to render the threat ineffective.
The onus of proof
An accused who wishes to rely on the defence of duress bears an evidentiary onus. This means they must call evidence that raises the defence. Once the defence has been raised, the prosecution must prove that the accused acted voluntarily and in order to do so must eliminate any reasonable possibility that he acted under duress.
When can the defence of duress not be argued?
The defence of duress cannot be argued in relation to very serious offences such as murder, treason and terrorism offences. This is because the criminal law considers that some actions are so serious that they cannot be excused even under extreme circumstances. However, courts have held that the defence of duress can be relied on by a person charged as an accessory to murder if they were forced to assist through threats of death or serious harm.
The defence of duress cannot be argued where the duress was foreseeable. The most common example of this is where the accused has chosen to associate with criminals.
The defence of duress in different states
The precise laws on the defence of duress vary between different states and territories. While in common law jurisdictions like Victoria, the defence of duress can only be argued where a threat of physical harm was made to a person, Queensland has extended the defence to cover threats to property. However, the defence can only be relied on where the response to the threat to property was proportionate.
If you require legal advice or representation in any legal matter, please contact Armstrong Legal.
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