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Criminal Law

Hogan Stanton Lawyers are able to assist in the following areas of criminal law:-

Drink Driving

There are four main offences that you may commit if you drive, attempt to drive or are in charge of a motor vehicle after consuming liquor or drugs:

♦  driving while over the no alcohol limit

♦  driving while over the general alcohol limit

♦  driving while under the influence

♦  driving while a relevant drug is present in blood or saliva

An immediate 24-hour suspension from driving applies to any person charged with the above offences. In some circumstances, your licence may be suspended immediately until the charge is finalised.

If your licence is suspended until the charge is finalised you may be able to apply to the court for a replacement licence to continue to drive in stated circumstances. Certain criteria must be met.

If you are convicted of a drinking driving offence or an offence of driving while a relevant drug was present you may apply to the court for a restricted licence to drive only at certain times or between certain places for employment purposes. Before granting a restricted licence, the court must be satisfied that you meet certain criteria.

The Hogan Stanton Lawyers team can advise and represent you in such applications usually for a fixed fee. If you are charged with an offence, please feel free to telephone us for urgent advices.

Loss of Licence

When you are convicted of enough offences to constitute a certain number of demerit points, your licence may be suspended.

Before your licence is suspended, The Transport Department must send you a Notice to Choose, giving you 21 days to choose between having your licence suspended for the requisite period or agreeing to be of good behaviour while driving for one year. If you make no choice, the suspension option applies.

If during the one year good behaviour period you have 2 or more demerit points allocated, then the Transport Department must give you a notice suspending the licence for double the previous suspension period and advise you of your right to apply for a special hardship order.

If you are convicted of speeding more than 40 km/h over the speed limit (“a high speed offence”) the Transport Department must give a notice to you suspending your licence for 6 months commencing on a date at least 21 days after the notice and advising of the right to apply for a special hardship order.

If you wish to apply for a special hardship order , certain criteria must be met and it must be made within 21 days of the your licence being suspended. Certain procedures must be followed.

The Hogan Stanton Lawyers team can advise and represent you in this application usually for a fixed fee. If you lose you licence please feel free to telephone us for urgent advices.

General Traffic Offences

There are many traffic offences. Simple traffic offences comprise camera detected offences and failure to observe road rules. You can contest a ticket or challenge a speed detection device.

More serious traffic offences involve the dangerous operation of a vehicle and murder and manslaughter through the use of a motor vehicle. An automatic minimum 6 month period of disqualification applies when a person is convicted of operating a vehicle dangerously. The mandatory penalty for murder is life imprisonment.

A person who drives a motor vehicle without due care and attention commits an offence and can be fined or serve periods of imprisonment.

It is an offence to drive a motor vehicle on a road without a valid licence or to allow another person known to be unlicenced to drive a motor vehicle. A wide range of penalties exist depending on the circumstances of the offence.

If you are charged with any of the above or other offences, particularly the more serious offences, we strongly recommend you seek legal advice so that we can advise and represent you in an endeavour to obtain the best possible outcome for you.


This is the process of a person being required to be taken into custody. An unlawful arrest can give rise to a civil and criminal action in relation to an assault and false imprisonment.

Arrests can be made with or without a warrant.

If you are arrested you should, if possible, tell an independent person that you have been arrested and make a request to call us. It is unwise to physically resist arrest as consequences may flow. Polite conduct toward the police may prevent minor charges being laid.

In certain circumstances, you must give your name and address to the police. Otherwise you have the right to remain silent.  The more serious the offence, the more necessary it is to have a well-calculated and informed approach to whether an interview should be undertaken at all. These decisions should only be made following a considered and informed discussion with an experienced lawyer.

We operate a 24 hour service whereby one of our lawyers can be contacted at any time. If this request is declined or there is a delay, it is safer not to speak to the police at all.

Drug Offences

A drug conviction may have wider repercussions than any penalty imposed by the court. It may affect your ability to seek or maintain employment and your ability to travel overseas.

As recent years have seen a policy change in sentencing drug-dependant offenders, with the introduction of a number of other options such as The Drug Court Program, Police Diversion Program, Court Diversion Program for minor drug offences and The Q-Merit Program, it is important that you seek legal representation to endeavour to obtain the best possible outcome for you and perhaps even avoid jail.

Bail Applications

When deciding to grant bail, a police office or the court will consider whether there is an unacceptable risk that you might:

♦   fail to appear and surrender into custody

♦   commit another offence

♦   endanger the safety or welfare of the alleged victim or any members of the public

♦   interfere with witnesses or otherwise obstruct the course of justice

If you are seeking release you will need to set out in affidavit evidence any evidence that addresses the following concerns:

♦   the nature and seriousness of the offence

♦   your character, antecedents, associations, home environment, employment and background

♦   previous bail history ( if any)

♦   the strength of the evidence against you

If you wish to make a bail application, have breached a bail undertaking or wish to appeal against a refusal of bail it is important that you obtain legal advice to ensure your interests are protected. The team at Hogan Stanton Lawyers are here for you.

Domestic Violence

Domestic Violence is the term used for repeated use of violent and abusive tactics to maintain power and control over the other person in a relationship.  Examples of domestic violence include the following:

♦  physical abuse (eg pushing, hitting, slapping, choking or injuring with objects or weapons)

♦  verbal abuse (eg screaming, shouting, name calling, using sarcasm, criticism or put downs)

♦  emotional or psychological abuse (eg any behaviour that threatens, intimidates or humiliates – destroying property, reckless driving of a vehicle with the victim in the car, threatening to injure or kill the victim, threatening suicide, or self harm so as to intimidate, frighten or control the victim)

♦  sexual abuse (eg any forced or unwanted sexual contact or activity)

♦  controlling behaviours (eg dictating what the victim does, who she sees and talks to, where she goes, preventing her from working or having any money of her own, preventing her from having contact with family or friends, reading texts or emails, or using GPS to track the victim’s movements)

♦  economic or financial abuse (eg withholding or threatening to withhold money, being refused or denied access to money resulting in the victim being financially dependent on their partner)

♦  spiritual or cultural abuse (eg ridiculing or putting down the victim’s beliefs and culture, preventing her from practising her religion or from participating in significant cultural ceremonies)

♦  stalking (eg worrying or frightening the victim by repeatedly watching her, following her, making persistent phone calls, sending texts, emails or mail)

If you are experiencing domestic violence or have fears for your safety or your children’s safety, we recommend you consider making a safety plan. You should also protect your digital safety.

If your spouse has been violent towards you, you may be able to get an order under the Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act which orders your spouse to leave the home.  You may also be able to get an exclusive use and occupation order and/or a restraining order from the family law courts.  If you are renting, you may also be able to apply to the Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal to be recognised as a tenant instead of your spouse.

The main way of getting legal protection from domestic violence is to apply to the Magistrates Court for a protection order under the Domestic and Family Violence Protection Act.

To obtain a protection order, you must be able to show to the court the following:

♦  there is a relevant relationship. Relationships include spousal relationship, intimate personal relationship, family relationship and informal care relationship

♦  there has been a past act of domestic violence (eg wilful injury, damage to property, intimidation or harassment, indecent behaviour, threats to injure you or damage your property)

♦  an order is necessary or desirable

If you have suffered from domestic violence you may also have a claim for criminal compensation or personal injuries.  We strongly recommend you seek immediate legal advice in this regard as there are strict time limits that apply.

Hogan Stanton Lawyers can assist you with the preparation of your application for a protection order and represent you in court.  We can take away some of the stress!

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