Criminal Law Matters: Know Your Rights When Being Questioned by the Police

April 18, 2013

Your right to remain silent isn’t the only right that you will have when you get arrested by the police. Remember that you will be proven guilty of any crime only if everything under due process has been exhausted.

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Here are some things you need to know if you or someone you know has been arrested.

The police will only have the right to arrest a person under the following circumstances:

A warrant of arrest is served.
The person is committing a criminal offence.
The local police has reason enough to believe that you have committed a crime in Sydney.
The local police reasonably believes that you have committed a crime outside of Sydney and that the crime committed is indictable offence against Sydney laws.

Things to expect when arrested:

During an arrest, you may be taken to the police station for questioning, and you may be required to disclose details on record. Keep in mind to ask if you are under arrest or for what reason you are arrested when the police take you into custody.

Before the police take you in for an interview or questioning:

They should specifically inform you that you are not required to say or do anything and that things you say or do could be used as evidence.
The police should also allow you to phone a family member or a friend to let them know your whereabouts.
You should also be allowed to phone a lawyer and you should talk to your lawyer in private.

Any questioning by the police should be postponed so you can have significant amount of time to talk to your relative or lawyer.

However, the police could cut your time on the phone under the following circumstances:

The phone call could result into someone else involved in the crime’s escape.
The phone call could cause the loss or destruction of some evidence.
The investigation is extremely urgent and that any delay could cause harm to others.

Age consideration:

People under 18 years of age may not be questioned by the police, unless a parent or guardian is present. In the absence of parent or guardian, an independent person may stand in. Before any questioning, the person under investigation must be given a chance to communicate to his or her parent, guardian or independent person in private.

In the absence of a parent or guardian, the independent person makes sure that the arrested person and the police understand each other and that the arrested party knows and understands his or her rights. The police or the arrested party can recommend who the independent person will be.

Take note that information disclosed by the arrested party under the age of 18 who is questioned without an independent person cannot be used as evidence in court.

In Sydney, criminal law and human rights is taken seriously by the government that’s why even the pettiest of crimes are given justice.

To know more about the services we offer, you can visit our informative image post here.

For more information on your rights and other considerations when you or someone you know is under arrest, call CM Lawyers on 02 9568 6266 or visit us today.

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