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."
Simple Offences, Crimes and Either Way Offences (WA)
In Western Australia, how a criminal offence is described in the legislation affects whether it is finalised on indictment in the District Court or Supreme Court or as a summary offence in the Magistrates Court. Under West Australian legislation, there are two types of offences: simple offences and crimes. The Criminal Code also contains either way offences, which can be dealt with either as simple offences or as a crime.
What is a simple offence?
A simple offence in Western Australia is a criminal act that is referred to in the Criminal Code 1913 as an ‘offence’ as opposed to a ‘crime.’ The Magistrates Court in Western Australia is the court of summary jurisdiction and deals with all types of ‘simple offences.’ Simple offences are minor offences that cannot be dealt with in the higher courts. For example, under section 313 of the Criminal Code, common assault is a simple offence. A person found guilty is liable to imprisonment for up to 18 months and to a fine of up to $18,000 or if it is an aggravated offence, to three years imprisonment and a fine of up to $36,000.
Other examples of simple offences are possession or use of a prohibited drug, driving under the influence of alcohol and driving without a valid license.
What is a crime?
Any criminal act referred to as a ‘crime’ in the Criminal Procedure Act 2004 is an indictable offence. In Western Australia, indictable offences are dealt with by the District or Supreme Court. The matter will be mentioned in the Magistrates Court and then after committal proceedings, be transferred to a higher court.
Examples of indictable offences include sexual penetration without consent, deprivation of liberty and concealing a will under section.
A person must be prosecuted with a simple offence within 12 months of the date of the alleged offence (unless otherwise prescribed).
A person can be prosecution with an indictable offence regardless of how much time has elapsed since the offence allegedly occurred.
What is an ‘either way’ offence?
An ‘either way’ offence is an offence described in legislation as a crime and for which the legislation sets out two different maximum penalties – one that applies where the matter is dealt with in the summary jurisdiction and another that applies where it is dealt with on indictment.
For example, a person who commits an assault causing bodily harm is guilty of a crime and is liable to a maximum of five years imprisonment when dealt with on indictment (or seven where the offence is aggravated). However, if the matter is dealt with summarily the person only faces a maximum of two years imprisonment and a fine of up to $24,000 (or three years and $36,000 for an aggravated offence).
Other examples of either way offences include:
- Possessing stolen or unlawful property;
- Being armed in a way that causes fear;
- Indecent assault; and
- Obscene act in public.
‘Either way’ offences are dealt with summarily unless the prosecution or defence applies under section 5(2) of the Criminal Code for the charge to be finalised on indictment. An application that an ‘either way’ offence be dealt with on indictment may be made because:
- The seriousness of the offence means that a Magistrate would be unable to adequately punish the defendant;
- Division 2A of the Sentencing Act 1995 (WA) applies;
- One or more co-accuseds is to be tried on indictment;
- The charge forms part of a course of conduct of the accused; or
- It is in the interests of justice for the matter to be dealt with on indictment.
If you require legal advice or representation in a criminal law matter or in 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?
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Perth WA 6000