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Patrick H.
Patrick H., Lawyer
Category: Australia Law
Satisfied Customers: 5358
Experience:  Dip Law LPAB - Sydney based lawyer
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What's the likely outcome person who fails to appear in

Customer Question

What's the likely outcome for a person who fails to appear in court for a charge of "Possession of Suspected Tainted Property". I advised her to surrender herself at a police station. She intends to plead not guilty.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Australia Law
Expert:  Patrick H. replied 1 year ago.

Hello and thank you for your question.

Your description of the offence "Possession of Suspected Tainted Property" does not accord exactly with the statutory offences regarding tainted property, but likely the relevant offence is one of the following:

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/qld/consol_act/cc189994/s433.html or

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/qld/consol_act/cc189994/s435.html

Both of which involve maximum sentences of up to 7 years imprisonment.

Clearly these are very serious offences, however, the actual punishment which a court would impose will depend on numerous factors such as the nature and value of the property involved, the criminal history of the accused, any mitigating circumstances that may excuse the behavior, and the general character of the defendent, etc. For a first time offence involving goods of modest value, and for a person otherwise of good character, it is possible a non custodial sentence would be imposed, on the other hand if the accused has a long history of serious offences and value of the goods in question is substantial a considerable prison sentence would be likely.

Also noe the offence is one which may be difficult to prove, since they require the authorities to establish that the accused had reason to believe that the goods were gained illegally which means defending the charge should be carefully considered.

Given the seriousness of the charge I would strongly recommend the accused engage a criminal lawyer to ensure the matter is dealt with in a thorough and professional way. The chances of a good outcome are much better in a case like this if the party is properly legally represented.

As to the failure to appear in court, that could result in a further charge, unless there is a very good reason to explain the failure to appear, but it should not itself affect the determination of the original charge.

I trust the above assists.

Good luck and PLEASE rate my answer.

Patrick