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    Why do I need a lawyer if I’m pleading guilty?

    18/12/17 1:22 PM

    You probably imagine a criminal defense lawyer to be standing in court cross-examining a witness to prove their client’s innocence. What about if you have admitted that you committed the offence? What if there is very clear evidence against you? If you are entering a plea of guilty, where does a lawyer fit into the picture?

    Entering a plea of guilty is not the end of the matter. You still need to be sentenced. Magistrates and Judges have a range of choices in how they sentence you, depending on the information they are presented with. Frank Law has knowledge from experience about the documents that should be presented to the court and how to present it. We make sure the court can see who you are as a person, rather than what you did in a specific moment.

    Character References

    Character references come from people who know you well enough to explain to the court the kind of person you are. They may demonstrate your characteristics, your genuine remorse for what you have done, or any community service that you have participated in.

    Letter of apology

    Magistrates and Judges take into account your remorse for what you have done. A way that you can express your remorse for your actions is to write it out in a letter for the Magistrate or Judge to read.

    Psychologist Reports

    If you suffer from any mental illness, a psychologist report is a way to show the court how your mental illness affected your behavior. It can also show the court that you have taken steps to change your behavior, and is a way to assure the court that the offence will not happen again.

    Submissions

    We will present to the court any other relevant information about your background, the surrounding circumstances of your actions, and reasons why your sentence should be as low as possible.

    Our strategy for sentence hearings results in all sentences being at the lowest end of the possible range we advise.

    If you have been charged with a criminal offence, speak to a criminal lawyer who has the experience to get you the best possible outcome. Contact our Criminal Law Practice Group at Frank Law for advice.