Case Study: District Court Appeal Allowed

Posted by janelle.tarabay on 29 April 2019

Sometimes things don’t go right the first time round, but that doesn’t mean you can’t appeal and try again.

Last Friday, Adam Faro appeared at Wollongong District Court for a client who had been found guilty of an assault charge in the Local Court. Our client came to us after being found guilty, asking to explore his options. After reviewing the transcript and the exhibits from the Local Court hearing, Adam was able to structure and prepare an argument, deconstructing each part of the case in the Local Court, analysing it and drawing to the Court’s attention the issues with the evidence and some of the legal judgments in the Local Court.

After a lengthy hearing in the District Court, our client received the vindication he deserved and his appeal was allowed, overturning the finding of guilty and conviction he received in the Local Court. He was delighted with result, which allowed him to return to his previous good character.

District Court appeals can be incredibly complicated. Careful attention and focus needs to be placed on structuring the correct argument for the each specific case. There is no easy ‘one brush’ approach to appeals which means it is very important to be sure you are running the correct argument for the specific case. One of the biggest limitations on appeals can be the ‘credit findings’ by the Local Court Magistrate – that is who the Magistrate believed was ‘telling the truth’ or who was reliable. However, in some cases, you can challenge those findings to enable the Judge deciding the appeal in the District Court to form their own opinion on the evidence – this is a principle established in the High Court case of Fox v Percy [2003] HCA 22. This is something that was strategically used in this appeal to achieve the excellent outcome for our client.

Adam is a Senior Associate at Streeton Lawyers who has a passion for District Court conviction appeals.

Streeton Lawyers supporting Sydney University Law Society

Posted by janelle.tarabay on 11 April 2019

In 2019, Streeton is proud to support the Sydney University Law Society (SULS) to encourage the next generation of lawyers. This year, we will be sponsoring two main initiatives:

1. THE STREETON LAWYERS CRIMINAL LAW MOOT

This is an internal mooting competition that takes place every year at the University of Sydney and is open to all LLB and JD students. This moot exclusively deals with issues of criminal law and is a great way for aspiring criminal lawyers to practice their skills.

Students are given the facts of a mock appeal case and asked to address specific questions of law. They hand in written submissions prior to the moot and make oral submissions at the moot before a panel of three judges.  The grand final will be judged by three experts in criminal law, one of whom is our principal, Justin Wong.

2. SULS SPORT

Every year, SULS run numerous sporting events. These include the weekly interfaculty sport competitions at the university as well as intervarsity sports events against other universities.

Photo taken by SULS

This year, we are also supporting SULS Sport, because we believe in the importance of a balanced and healthy lifestyle, particularly for aspiring lawyers who are still learning to manage their study workload against their other commitments.