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Our 31-year-old client was pulled over by the police for a random breath test. As he was being arrested for driving with low range PCA and failure to display “P” Plates, our client attempted to throw away a small bag of cannabis which was in his pocket, and was consequentially also charged with possess prohibited drug (cannabis).

Our client attended the Penrith Local Court unrepresented and entered a plea of guilty without the getting any legal advice. In the local court sentence, our client was convicted and fined for the offences of possess prohibited drug and failure to display “P” plates. As a consequence of the criminal conviction, our client’s senior level employment with the Department of Defence was jeopardised, and the convictions would have significant implications on his future career prospects. Our client also required a valid driving license due to his dependents who relied on his ability to drive.

Immediately following the outcome at Penrith Local Court, our client got in touch with our sydney CDLA office and was immediately put through to our criminal defence lawyer Bashir El Kheir who quickly filed a severity appeal in the Penrith District Court to appeal the local court orders.

In preparation for the appeal hearing, our Bashir worked around the clock to the perfection required to maximise our client’s chances of convincing the court to not convict our client pursuant to a section 10 (CRO) order.

Bashir organised a myriad of further material to be prepared that our client failed to do in the lower court, including evidence of employment, letter of remorse, evidence of treatment and local court sentencing statistics. Bashir also prepared extensive and persuasive written submissions seeking that the local court orders be quashed, and replaced with non-convictions for all charges, even after our client having entered pleas of guilty to them.

On the appeal hearing at the Penrith District Court, our Bashir made extensive verbal submissions and tendered all the prepared evidence to the presiding Judge.

Ultimately, the District Court Judge accepted Bashir’s submissions and quashed the local court convictions, replacing same with Conditional Release Orders without proceeding to a conviction. Our client was extremely relieved as he could then continue his career without the threat of a conviction on his record and move on with his life without impacting his dependants.

AUTHOR Jimmy Singh

Mr. Jimmy Singh is the Principal Lawyer at Criminal Defence Lawyers Australia - Leading Criminal Lawyers in Sydney, Delivering Exceptional Results in all Australian Criminal Courts.

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