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."
Coughing or Spitting at a Public Official During COVID-19
Under s 10 of the Public Health Act 2010 (NSW), it is an offence to intentionally spit at or cough on a public official in a way that would reasonably be likely to cause fear about the spread of COVID-19.
If the offence is dealt with by way of a penalty notice, it attracts a fine of $5,000. If it is dealt with by a court attendance notice, it is punishable by a maximum penalty of imprisonment for 6 months and/or a fine of up to $11,000.
The offence of coughing on or spitting at a public official exists in addition to the offence of common assault, which occurs when a person intentionally or recklessly applies force to another person or causes that person to fear the application of force without consent and without lawful excuse. Common assault is the charge generally brought when one person spits at or on another person without consent.
You can find a short description of each of these penalties at the bottom of this page.
What the Police must prove
To be found guilty of the offence, the prosecution must prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that you:
- spat at or coughed on
- a public official
- in a way that would reasonably be likely to cause fear about the spread of COVID-19.
A “public official” is defined as:
- (a) a health worker, or
- (b) a police officer within the meaning of the Police Act 1990, or
- (c) another person exercising public functions under a law of New South Wales, or
- (d) an Immigration and Border Protection worker within the meaning of the
Australian Border Force Act 2015 of the Commonwealth, or
(e) a person employed or otherwise engaged by the Commonwealth Department of Health.
Possible Defences to Coughing on or Spitting at a Public Official
- You had a “reasonable excuse.”
- You acted in self-defence
- It was an accident
- You acted under duress
- You acted out of necessity
The maximum penalty is $5,000 or life imprisonment.
- Prison Sentence
- Intensive Corrections Order (ICO)
- Suspended Sentence
- Community Service Order (CSO)
- Good Behaviour Bond
If you require legal advice about coughing on, or spitting at a public official during the COVID-19 Pandemic or any other 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?
201 Elizabeth Street
Sydney NSW 2000
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Melbourne VIC 3000
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Canberra ACT 2601
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Perth WA 6000