What is a Criminal Offence?General Crime & Serious Crime

The words crime or criminal refer to an unlawful act punishable by a government. Usually crime is an act harmful not only to a person or persons, but also to the broader community or the state. Such harmful acts are forbidden and can result in punishment being dispensed.

Criminal law is different to civil lawsuits in that a higher burden of proof is required, such as beyond a reasonable doubt, rather than balance of probabilities. This means that the prosecution’s case must be very good in order for a conviction to be secured in criminal court.

What is a Criminal Defence Lawyer?

Criminal defence lawyers are specialists in representing people for criminal law matters. They are also known as criminal lawyers.

Criminal defence lawyers deal with the issues surrounding arrest, bail, a criminal investigation, criminal charges, sentencing, appeals and other post-trial issues.

The type of work that our criminal defence lawyers do includes legal representation for pleas of guilty, defended hearing, bail applications, weekend bail applications, sentencing, severity appeals, conviction appeals, all grounds appeals, jury trial, public hearings, public inquiries and much more.


Expert Criminal Defence Lawyers

Nyman Gibson Miralis criminal defence lawyers are specialists in representing people for criminal law matters. We have an accredited criminal law specialist as well as a team of Sydney criminal lawyers who are available to provide you with legal advice 24 hours 7 days a week.

It does not matter where you live in NSW. Our criminal law experts travel all over the State.

We are ready to represent you in the Local Court, Children’s Court, District Court, Supreme Court, Court of Criminal Appeal and the High Court of Australia. We also appear at the NSW State Parole Authority hearings, Police Integrity Commission, NSW Crime Commission and Australian Crime Commission, Royal Commissions, Coronial Inquests, Coronial Inquiries, and the Independent Commission Against Corruption. We may even be able to represent you in courts outside of NSW and the ACT, due to new laws that allow greater mobility for solicitors who want to practice in multiple States or Territories throughout Australia.

Nyman Gibson Miralis handle privately funded cases as well as Legal Aid matters. Everyone is entitled to benefit from our criminal law expertise.

Our criminal defence lawyers have appeared in many high profile cases and have been guests on A Current Affair, Today Tonight, all television news programs and shows like Australian Story. Our solicitors have also featured in newspapers and radio programs.

General Crime and Serious Crime FAQs

Can Police Arrest for Questioning?

Definitely not. Police can arrest you if they believe on reasonable grounds that you have committed an offence – however they may NOT arrest you for the purpose of questioning.

Police might ask that you accompany them to a police station for questioning – however, if you are not under arrest, you are not obliged to go with them and you are not obliged to answer any of their questions (you may have a positive duty to answer questions for a limited type of case such as certain traffic matters, or if you are the owner/custodian of a motor vehicle involved in certain types of offences – police must tell you if you have a legal obligation to answer their questions).

We advise you not to answer any questions until such time that you have spoken to one of our specialist criminal lawyers.

If in any doubt, contact our Sydney office or our Parramatta office immediately 24/7.

What To Do If You Are Arrested - or A Suspect

The first thing to do is seek immediate specialist advice – preferably from an accredited criminal law specialist.

It is essential that you receive advice so that you can decide whether to take part in an interview or answer any questions and to know what your rights are. You have a right to silence. You have a right to speak with a lawyer.

Typical advice upon arrest for this type of matter would be not to take part in an interview without legal advice or to answer police questioning – similarly if you are under suspicion you really should seek advice as a matter of urgency.

Police may attempt to conduct a forensic procedure, if you are a suspect in custody. This could involve taking a buccal swab or some other procedure. You should obtain advice and the police must afford you the oppoprtunity of seeking advice.

If you are a suspect for a sexual assault, contact our Parramatta office or Sydney office for advice prior to speaking with police. We can attend the police station with you to protect your rights, advise you of your rights, explain the procedures, and if necessary apply for bail and represent you when the matter is in Court.

What is a Buccal Swab?

A buccal swab is a painless means of taking a DNA sample from a suspect. If you are a suspect in custody, police have rights under the law to take a DNA sample by means of a buccal swab – subject to strict compliance including approval by an appropriate senior officer. Failure to comply can result in a sample being taken by force by removing strands of hair – which can be unpleasant and unnecessary.

If you are in custody and police want to take a buccal swab, seek legal advice from one of our criminal lawyers immediately.

Should I obtain Character References?

Yes. We provide a character reference advice and personally check the content of all references before they are used in Court. Character references can have a significant positive impact on the outcome of the case.

Can Mental Health Issues Impact on How a Case is Run?

Yes. Sometimes a client is mentally ill and unfit to plead – in other words, they have a mental impairment which would not allow them to have a fair trial. Psychiatric proof is required to establish that they are unfit to stand trial. Both the Crown and the Defence have the opportunity of obtaining this specialist medical evidence.