Should you be charged with a crime and prefer to stay out of jail than inside it, then hiring a criminal defence lawyer is strongly advised.
These are experienced professionals who have been taught and educated in the means of defending their clients against charges that lay them in legal trouble.
This is not a way to fight against facts or evidence, but rather to put those cases into context and to fight for their innocence when and where it is appropriate to do so.
Yet there is a science to what a criminal defence lawyer will undertake when building a case.
Here we will outline some of those procedurals in further detail, illustrating just how important they are as a profession and a service to the community.
Speak With Key Witnesses
Witnesses fit a number of different categories in the legal field. From a direct eyewitness who saw the event play out in real time to an expert witness that has a background in the filed of questioning, a reliable witness or a character witness, a criminal defence lawyer will be able to acquire on record statements and testimony from as many parties as possible. The prosecution will also have their own witnesses, but it will be the attorney’s capacity to source and speak with these parties that could make the difference when the final verdict is found.
Present Legal Loopholes
There are all manner of Australian federal, state and local laws that are listed and on public record. However, a skilled criminal defence lawyer will be able to identify loopholes in the system as they attempt to acquit their client of charges if they are facing jail time. Whether they pertain to drug or firearm possession, exchanging of financial and banking information, or in the case of manslaughter – there are instances where a client can be acquitted on a technicality. They are rare occasions but when identified, you will be thankful that you have an attorney fighting your corner.
Identify Weaknesses In Prosecution
Operating as a criminal defence lawyer is almost as much about the delegitimisation of the prosecution’s case as it is about legitimising the case for the defence. Whether that involves cross-examining a witness to questioning the validity of a piece of evidence to potential tampering or malpractice on the part of the police, any objective that works against the prosecution will help. Remember that the charged party has the right to be considered innocent until proven guilty, and placing seeds of doubt in the mind of the judge or jury will go a long way to continuing that line of innocence.
Knowledge of Plea Consequences
Keeping a client out of jail on the part of a criminal defence lawyer might even be as simple as pleading guilty under certain circumstances. Perhaps the client has evidence and testimony that will lead to the conviction of a person more of interest to police, or a plea might only lead to a fine or community service. A lawyer will have knowledge of what the implications are for various pleas and this is something that can help guide a path.
Uphold Procedures and Principles
Staying out of jail will ultimately come down to the credibility and competency of the criminal defence lawyer you have hired. If deadlines are missed, if they mistreat witnesses or jury members, or simply fail at their basic duties, then that will only play into the hands of the prosecution. An expert that follows through on their procedures and upholds accepted principles helps to build the narrative of innocence.
Hiring a criminal defence lawyer will not guarantee you a not guilty plea that keeps you out of jail. What it will do, should the criminal defence lawyer be credible, experienced and determined to source a healthy outcome, is to give you a voice and a pathway to remaining a free citizen.