Charged with a special range drink driving offence can effect your employment, licence and travel plans. Our expert lawyers specialise in drink driving cases with over 20 years experience in successfully avoiding license disqualifications, and criminal convictions countless times. They know exactly how to maximise your chances at a section 10.
Your Options in Court
PLEADING NOT GUILTY
You can only be guilty of special range drink driving if police can prove the following elements, beyond a reasonable doubt in court:
- You drove a motor vehicle; and
- Your blood or breath had an alcohol reading of 0.02 or more, but less than 0.05 at the time of driving.
You will be found not guilty, and your charge dismissed, if police are unable to prove each of the above 2 elements.
It is also an offence to even occupy the driver seat attempting to put the vehicle into motion.
Defences to this charge
You are Not Guilty if:
- Your engine was switched off, and you were not attempting to put the vehicle in motion.
- Police conducted a breath test on you on your driveway, or other private property of yours.
- Police conducted a breath test on you more than 2 hours after you drove.
- Pharmacologist expert report: Where your alcohol reading would have been less than 0.02 at the time of driving when stopped by police. i.e. Where you took a few quick drinks moments before driving when police stopped you. Usually the alcohol effect reaches its peak in your body between half an hour to 1 hour after drinking. Depending on your gender, weight, timing of drinks etc, an expert may be able to say your reading would more likely have been less than 0.02.
- Honest mistake: Where you honestly and reasonably believed you were not effected by alcohol. i.e. Without your knowledge, your drink was spiked.
You will be found not guilty, and your charge dismissed, if any one of the above defences apply to you. Our expert drink driving lawyers have a proven track record of proving their clients innocence countless times, especially getting charges dropped early. Speak to them now on your best defence and how to strengthen it early.
If you decide to plead guilty to special range drink driving, see the below critical points on how to best prepare and present your case to the Judge, to maximise your chances at getting a section 10 in order to avoid a licence disqualification, and criminal record.
25% Discount on punishment
Pleading guilty to special range drink driving early enough will allow the Judge to reduce your punishment by 25%. This increases your chances of a s10 to avoid loosing your license and getting a conviction.
The later a plea of guilty is entered in court, the more the discount reduces. This is why it’s critical to speak to an experienced lawyer early in your case.
Traffic Offenders Program
Completing an accredited traffic offenders program can drastically improve your chances at getting a s10, avoiding a disqualification from driving and conviction against your name.
Our principal Mr. J Singh highly specialises in drink driving cases, and lectures in the traffic offenders program. Our team will guide and enrol you into the best course.
Good character references
Getting letters expressing your good character, remorse, insight and shame for the Judge to read can often lead to a more favourable, lenient outcome. Especially if the letter expresses your need for a license and effect of a criminal conviction on your career.
For best chances at avoiding a conviction and disqualification, the letters should come from family, work, friends, charity and letter of apology from you. Our lawyers can guide you.
Negotiate to drop charges
If police act illegally or improperly, our senior drink driving lawyers will analyse the evidence, pick out the holes in it, and negotiate to convince police to drop the charges early. Our team specialises in doing this, with an exceptional successful record for over 20 years.
The set of facts is initially made by police, handed to the Judge to read, expressing your plea of guilty and details of the offence. If your facts sheet is one sided, inaccurately reflecting you in the worst possible light, speak to an experienced senior lawyer on how to change this to make it more favourable to you. By changing it to favour you more, your result will likely be much better.
The Judge will consider the length of your journey, number of people in the vehicle, reason for pulling you over, your demeanour, way you were driving which may be, reason for driving. Our team will pick out the holes, and tactfully negotiate with police to change the facts to favour you where possible.
Obtaining a well written psychologist or psychiatrist report for the Judge to read can drastically improve your court outcome, getting you closer to avoiding a criminal record and keeping your licence.
For best chances at this, the report should be from a highly respected and experienced expert, expressing your mental state at the time, explanation for driving, need for a license in the home, remorse, shame and insight.
The below tables include the maximum and minimum penalties regarding disqualification of licence, and fines for special range drink driving. This only applies if you don’t get a s10 result.
Licence Disqualification periods if convicted for special range
|Compulsory Disqualification Period prior to Interlock Period Starting||Interlock Period Where You Must Drive With Interlock Device Installed In Car||Disqualification Period If Interlock Program Not Applied To You|
|If you have no previous drink driving convictions in last 5 years||Interlock period not applied
|Interlock period not applied||Automatic: 6 months
Minimum: 3 months
|If you have a previous drink driving conviction in last 5 years||Minimum:1 month
Maximum: 3 months
|1 year||Automatic: 1 year
Minimum: 6 months
Maximum fine and imprisonment if convicted for special range
|Maximum Imprisonment||Maximum Fine|
|If you have no drink driving conviction in last 5 years||Not Applicable||$1,100|
|If you have a drink driving conviction in last 5 years||Not Applicable||$2,200|
The maximum punishment of disqualification and fine is usually rarely applied, and reserved for the most serious cases.
Types of penalties
Depending on the above points on preparing and presenting your case, and your traffic record, the Judge can give you any one of the following types of penalties for special range drink driving:
- Section 10 Dismissal
- Conditional Release Order
- Community Correction Order
- Intensive Correction Order
- Full Time Imprisonment
For maximising your chances at avoiding the loss of your licence, and for the best chances at avoiding a criminal record, get experienced guidance and advice from a team of expert drink driving lawyers who have dedicated their careers in this. Our senior lawyers are one of the few absolute best drink driving lawyers with over 20 years experience in successfully achieving s10’s countless times.