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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."
False imprisonment is a common law offence in several states of Australia (Victoria, New South Wales and South Australia). Other states which are code jurisdictions, such as the Northern Territory and Queensland, have an equivalent criminal offence known as deprivation of liberty, which is found in legislation.
False imprisonment is also a tort, (civil wrong). The same set of facts can amount to both the criminal offence and the tort of false imprisonment, meaning that both a criminal prosecution and civil proceedings can result.
False imprisonment consists of ‘the intentional and unlawful restraint of the liberty of another person against that person’s will’ (in the words of Justice Coldrey in the 2006 decision of R v Huynh).
How is false imprisonment proven?
A person can be falsely imprisoned by a private individual or by a public authority, such as the police. Private individuals commonly commit false imprisonment during the course of assaults and kidnappings, domestic violence offences and sexual assault as well as in circumstances where no other offence is being committed. Police can be found to have falsely imprisoned a person if they hold a person in custody without lawful authority or for longer than it is lawful to hold them for. This may occur because of an administrative error, such as getting a person’s bail status or prison release date wrong.
For a person to be falsely imprisoned their freedom must be unlawfully restricted to the point where they cannot move from one place to another. The restraint must be a total and not merely a partial obstruction. There must be no reasonable means of escape available to them. A person unlawfully confined to a motor vehicle is falsely imprisoned if the only escape is jumping out of the moving vehicle.
The person need not be restrained by physical force or a physical barrier. The threat of force is sufficient for the offence or tort to be made out. For example, where an armed robber tells customers to get on the floor, threatening to shoot them if they try to leave, false imprisonment occurs without any physical contact.
For false imprisonment to be proven, the defendant must intend to detain the victim. They need not have any intention to arouse fear of violence. However, the tort of false imprisonment is a tort of strict liability, meaning that although the defendant must intend to detain the victim, they need not intend to do so unlawfully. When a public authority makes an administrative error that results in a person being unlawfully detained, it may be sued for false imprisonment notwithstanding it occurred because of a mistake. Similarly, if a private individual detains a person in a ‘citizen’s arrest’, believing them guilty of a serious offence, they may be sued for false imprisonment if that belief turns out to be incorrect.
What are the defences?
There are several defences available to a charge of false imprisonment.
It is a defence to false imprisonment if the victim consented to being confined without being subjected to duress, coercion or fraud. An example of this is where a person boards a commercial aircraft, knowing they will be unable to leave for the duration of the flight.
Police may detain a person if they believe the person has committed a crime. This may occur without a warrant when a serious offence is committed in public view and police become involved.
A shopkeeper may detain a person for a brief period if they believe they have committed retail theft. This may be for a short period while they ascertain whether an item has been paid for or while the authorities are contacted.
In some circumstances, where a serious offence has been committed, a private individual may detain another until law enforcement officers arrive in a citizen’s arrest. This may occur when an offender has been ‘on the run’ and their name and photograph have been published in relation to offences.
Reasonable parental discipline
It is lawful for a person to detain their child provided the act falls within the ambit of reasonable parental discipline. For instance, confining a child to their bedroom as a punishment would not be false imprisonment unless it continued for an unreasonable period of time.
There are a number of criminal offences related to false imprisonment, which may be laid as alternative or additional charges.
Kidnapping requires the victim to have been taken away, whereas false imprisonment only requires the victim to be prevented from moving from one place to another.
An assault may sometimes occur together with an instance of false imprisonment or assault may be an alternative charge for the same act. However, false imprisonment can occur even where there is no assault committed.
Manus Island class action
In 2016, the Papua New Guinea Supreme Court held that the detention of asylum seekers by Australia in the Manus Island Detention Centre was unlawful as the right to personal liberty is entrenched in the constitution of Papua New Guinea.
The following year, the asylum seekers remaining in the centre were transferred to another facility where their freedom of movement was not restricted.
In July 2017, the detainees initiated a class action against both the Australian government and the PNG government seeking compensation for false imprisonment. The case has not yet been decided.
If you require legal advice or representation in any legal matter please contact Armstrong Legal.
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