Criminal Law

As criminal law matters are highly complex, choosing the right lawyer for your criminal law matter is an important decision. The Steiner Legal team has over 21 years experience in the criminal justice system.

 

Our Principal Solicitor Erin Steiner was a member of the New South Wales Police Force for 18 years before establishing Steiner Legal. With 10 years in plain clothes and as a qualified Detective Erin brings a level of experience to criminal law matters that many other criminal lawyers are simply not able to bring.

 

During her career as a Detective Erin was in charge of major investigations including matters such as murder, manslaughter, sexual assaults, major strike force drug investigations and other serious indictable offences.

 

Erin’s experience in the New South Wales Police Force provides a valuable insight when assessing evidence, police procedure and dealing with police and public prosecutors.

 

The team at Steiner Legal can appear in courts throughout NSW and the various other jurisdictions in Australia. Not only do we have years of practical experience in the criminal justice system, we also have extensive courtroom experience. Our staff have exceptional advocacy skills and are passionate about getting our client’s the best possible outcome for their case.

 

Some, but not all, of the areas in which Steiner Legal can provide representation are:

Drink Driving

What is a drink driving offence?

You will be charged with a drink driving offence if you have driven a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration above the legal limit of 0.05. Taxi, bus and truck drivers are subject to a ‘special range’ blood alcohol level of 0.02, and provisional or learners license holders are subject to the ‘novice range,’ and not allowed to drive a motor vehicle under the influence of any alcohol.

Driving offences for full license holders are divided into three main categories: low-range, mid-range and high range offences. A low range PCA (prescribed concentration of alcohol) is committed by a person who drives a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of at least 0.05 but below 0.08.A mid-range PCA is committed by a person who drives a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of at least 0.08 but below 0.15.A high range PCA is committed by a person who drives a motor vehicle with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.15 and above.

Will I lose my license?

All drink driving offences carry a license disqualification penalty. The length of disqualification will depend on whether the offence was your first or second offence within a five year period, as well as your blood alcohol concentration at the time of the offence. If this is your second offence in five years the penalties will be greater. Mid-range and high-range offences may also carry a term of imprisonment.

 

FIRST OFFENCE PENALTIES

OFFENCE BLOOD ALCOHOL RANGE MAXIMUM PENALTY AUTOMATIC DISQUALIFICATION MINIMUM DISQUALIFICATION
Novice Range 0.00 – under 0.02 $1,100 6 months 3 months
Special Range 0.02 – under 0.05 $1,100 6 months 3 months
Low-Range 0.05 – under 0.08 $1,100 6 months 3 months
Mid-Range 0.08 – under 0.15 $2,200 and/or 9 months imprisonment 12 months 6 months
High-Range 0.15 and above $3,300 and/or imprisonment for 18 months 3 years 12 months

 

SECOND OFFENCE PENALTIES

OFFENCE BLOOD ALCOHOL RANGE MAXIMUM PENALTY AUTOMATIC DISQUALIFICATION MINIMUM DISQUALIFICATION
Novice Range 0.00 – under 0.02 $2,200 12 months 6 months
Special Range 0.02 – under 0.05 $2,200 12 months 6 months
Low-Range 0.05 – under 0.08 $2,200 12 months 6 months
Mid-Range 0.08 – under 0.15 $3,300 and/or 12 months imprisonment 3 years 12 months
High-Range 0.15 and above $5,500 and/or imprisonment for 2 months 5 years 2 years

 

What will affect my penalty?

The New South Wales Supreme Court has provided a Drink Driving Guideline Judgment which outlines what will influence the penalty you will receive for a drink driving offence.

This may include:

  • Your traffic record
  • Your need for a licence
  • Your character
  • Your willingness to engage in the Traffic Offender Program
  • Whether there were aggravating features which made the offence more serious, such as the number of people put at risk by the driving, the length of the drive or the presence of aggressive or competitive driving.

 

Additionally, if you agree to the fitting of an Interlock device in your car, you may be able to substantially reduce the time that your license is disqualified. In this instance, a first offence high range license disqualification may be reduced from 12 months to 6 months.

Can I avoid a conviction?

It may be possible to have your drink driving offence recorded as a ‘non-conviction.’ This is called a Section 10 order. You will not have to pay any penalty or lose your license, and you will not have a criminal record.

The court will not award a Section 10 order lightly, and will take several things into consideration of its order. This could include your age, prior offences, the seriousness of the offence or anything else that the court deems relevant.

Traffic Offences – including serious offences involving injury and death

Assault – all categories

Weapons Possession

Robbery

Sexual Assault

Murder and Manslaughter

All other criminal matters

Our core practice in criminal law is dealing with more serious or complex offences however we are available to assist in all areas of criminal law. We also appear for 24/7 bail applications, police interviews or last minute court appearances.

 

Steiner Legal is happy to provide an initial case assessment and an expert opinion about your probable outcome in court.

We are the right firm to assist you with your legal needs, ensuring you feel our high level of commitment and care while receiving accurate and superior quality legal representation.