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Overturning an unjust conviction

A man came to Marriott Oliver after lodging an Appeal to the District Court against convictions for three firearms charges in the Local Court, despite entering guilty pleas to these charges at the time.

Situation

A man came to Marriott Oliver after lodging an Appeal to the District Court against convictions for three firearms charges in the Local Court, despite entering guilty pleas to these charges at the time.

He claimed he was innocent of the charges and had only entered guilty pleas under pressure from his solicitor at Court. He had been told a guilty plea was the best way around these minor charges and he would only receive minimal fines. What he wasn’t told was that a conviction for any one of these offences automatically revoked his firearms licence with no chance of having it restored for at least 10 years.

Strategy

Marriott Oliver thoroughly reviewed the original allegations made by Police. We then commenced informal discussions with the Police and the Prosecuting authority and prepared detailed representations for withdrawal of the charges.

We simultaneously lodged an application for an internal review of the decision to revoke the firearms licence, permits and registrations, as success in the District Court did not guarantee his licence would be restored.

The review was successful. His firearms licence was restored together with all related registrations and permits.

Success

The convictions were quashed by the District Court and the internal review was successful. The man’s firearms licence was returned and there were no longer any convictions on his record.