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I will definitely be using your company in the future if needed. Lisa kept me at ease also there were no grey areas with great advice. Helana is a great front of house.
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."
Wilful Damage (Qld)
In Queensland, it is a criminal offence to damage property intentionally and without lawful excuse. This is known as wilful damage and can include damage done to public property, commercial property and private property. The offence is governed by section 469 of the Criminal Code Act 1899. In other states and territories, this offence is referred to as criminal damage and property damage. There is no longer a specific offence known as malicious damage, though the term is still widely used.
Wilful damage is one of the most commonly reported criminal offences. It incorporates a wide range of acts including graffiti, vandalism and deliberate or reckless destruction of property. In some circumstances, a person can even be found guilty of damaging their own property, such as where a person deliberately damages their car so as to make an insurance claim.
An item need not be destroyed completely in order for the offence of wilful damage or malicious damage to be made out. It is enough that the item is rendered “imperfect or inoperative”:
Defences to wilful damage
A person charged with a wilful damage offence may validly argue any of the below defences.
Absence of intent
To be found guilty of wilful damage beyond a reasonable doubt, a person must have caused the damage intentionally. If the damage was an accident, it does not amount to an offence.
It is a defence to wilful damage if the owner of the property consented to the person damaging it. An example of this would be where a neighbour agrees to let someone break up old furniture to use as firewood.
Another defence to wilful damage is extraordinary emergency. It is not an offence to damage property when you are in danger of death or serious injury. An example of this would be ripping up a person’s clothing to bandage a profusely bleeding wound.
Compulsion or duress
Compulsion or duress is also a defence to wilful damage. If a woman in a domestic violence relationship damages property because her abusive partner demands that she do so and threatens her with violence if she does not comply, then she will not be found guilty of wilful damage.
Penalties for wilful damage
In Queensland, there is a range of maximum penalties specified for the offence of wilful damage, depending on the nature of the property involved and the way the damage was done. Offences against section 469 of the Act range from minor offences to extremely serious offences that carry a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.
The maximum penalty for wilful damage that does not fall into any special category is imprisonment for five years. Destroying or damaging premises by explosion, where someone is present in the property and/or a person’s life is endangered, carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment.
Which court will deal with the offence?
There are different categories of offences in Queensland, which are heard in different courts. Misdemeanours, also known as summary offences, are heard in the Magistrates Court, and crimes (or indictable offences) are heard in the District Court or the Supreme Court. In some cases, parties to a matter have a choice as to whether to consent to the matter being heard in the Magistrates Court or whether to insist that it be dealt with on indictment in a higher court.
The simple offence of wilful damage is a misdemeanour and is heard in the Magistrates Court. All of the other wilful damage offences listed above are crimes and may be heard by the higher courts.
When a person is found guilty of a property damage offence, the court can order them to pay restitution as well as imposing a sentence. This means the offender is ordered to repay the victim the cost of the damage they caused. This can be done in a lump sum or in instalments, depending on the offender’s financial situation. However, restitution orders are generally only made against offenders who have the capacity to pay. As “malicious damage” offences are frequently committed by juveniles, who have no source of income, there are many cases where a finding of guilt is recorded but no restitution order is made.
If you require legal advice or representation in relation to a “malicious damage” offence, please contact Armstrong Legal.
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