Anastasia Qvist is an outstanding lawyer. My criminal law situation (family violence order) was difficult, complex and Ana's diligence saved me as I was going through the most difficult period of my life. Ana is down to earth, commonsense and she even kept our costs to a minimum. She is a skilled litigator and knows the ins and outs of the ACT Magistrates Court. She dealt skillfully with the DPP and is an excellent negotiator. You will get a fair representation and she genuinely cares about her clients. She has my complete recommendation. The lady goes to bat for her clients.
I would strongly recommend Anastasia to anyone who is seeking legal representation. As a first-time offender who was charged with a Level 2 Drink Driving offence, she walked me through every step of the matter and was very upfront and clear on all aspects of my case. She was always accessible when I needed advice. Her approach and advice were excellent. Under her representation, I received the best possible outcome and managed to avoid a criminal conviction. She was a pleasure to deal with throughout the whole matter.
Anastasia Qvist was very professional and helpful in every step of my matter. I got a very good outcome and I can’t thank you enough for your hard work and the Armstrong Legal team in Canberra. I would highly recommend her!!!
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."
What is a Voir Dire?
A voir dire is a part of a legal proceeding where a preliminary question of law is decided. This may be the determination of whether a fact exists and/or whether a particular piece of evidence is admissible in a trial or contested hearing. A voir dire has been described as a ‘trial within a trial’ because it may involve the calling of evidence and making of submissions which are not admissible in the trial proper.
Voir dires are often considered to be ‘pre-trial’ or ‘pre-hearing’ arguments. However, they can be had at any stage in relation to proceedings. They can be conducted in every jurisdiction, and not only in relation to jury trials. When a voir dire is conducted in a matter that is to be decided by a jury, it is held in the jury’s absence.
Purpose of a voir dire
The purpose of a voir dire is to allow the magistrate or judge presiding over proceedings to make a ruling about a matter which is essential to the way in which the proceedings will be run. In some cases, a ruling on the voir dire will make or break a case and as such, ventilating the issue at the start of the proceedings can result in a speedy resolution of the matter. In other matters, the ruling will affect the way in which the prosecution or defence will present its case.
Matters that may be determined
Only questions that relate to a fact, the law or the admissibility of evidence may be determined in a voir dire.
Examples of issues that may be raised and determined include:
- Whether evidence which is hearsay should be permitted to be used in the prosecution case;
- Whether evidence of a complaint made at a time soon after the alleged incident and circumstances that render it likely to be true;
- Whether a search warrant was lawful and permitted entry and/or seizure of certain evidence; and
- Whether evidence was unlawfully obtained and thus, should be excluded from the proceedings.
A judge or magistrate has the discretion to allow a voir dire and may refuse to allow a voir dire to be held where it is not deemed to be essential to ensure a fair trial.
Outcome of a voir dire
The party who seeks a ruling on the voir dire is required to satisfy the court that the ruling ought to be made. Whether the party satisfies the court that the ruling sought should be made will depend on any evidence that is called, any findings of fact made by the Magistrate or Judge and whether the submissions of the party are accepted by the magistrate or judge.
The Magistrate or Judge will ultimately hear submissions from each of the parties before making a ruling in relation to the issue of fact, law and/or admissibility raised. In some cases, the ruling will be made briefly and on the spot, whereas in other cases a Magistrate or Judge may adjourn the proceedings for days or weeks to prepare a judgement on the ruling.
The evidence on the voir dire does not become evidence in a hearing or trial, unless such a course is able to be consented to and appropriate in the circumstances. Such is more common in the Local Court than in jury trials.
If you require legal advice or representation in any legal matter, please contact Armstrong Legal.
WHERE TO NEXT?
If you suspect that you may be under investigation, or if you have been charged with an offence, it is vital to get competent legal advice as early as possible. Our lawyers are highly specialised in criminal law and will be able to guide you through the process while dealing with the various authorities related to your matter.
WHY CHOOSE ARMSTRONG LEGAL?
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Canberra ACT 2601
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Perth WA 6000