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Legal Aid Funding for Co-Accused Representation Policy Changed in Aftermath of Decision in R v Pham

Posted on Categories Criminal law Tags , , , , Leave a comment on Legal Aid Funding for Co-Accused Representation Policy Changed in Aftermath of Decision in R v Pham

The matter concerned drug trafficking charges involving 3 co-defendants, including Mr Pham. Legal Aid provided the funding to private lawyers to represent the 3 co-accused at the trial. The co-defendants were all represented by the same firm of solicitors, although not by the same individual solicitors from within that firm.

At trial, one of Mr Pham’s co-defendants gave evidence that implicated Mr Pham in the drug-trafficking crime. Mr Pham did not give nor call any evidence, and relied solely on the evidence given by that co-defendant for his own defence.

Mr Pham was convicted of the drug-trafficking offence as a result of that trial. In making this appeal, Mr Pham alleged that the solicitors representing the co-defendants had failed to advise him about the content of this evidence before the trial. Mr Pham further alleged that this failure allowed him to be inculpated without being afforded the opportunity to explain himself, and that as a result he did not have a fair trial.

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Lorna Jane’s comprehensive court win

Posted on Categories civil litigation, Evidence, Industrial relations, Negligence, Personal Injury Tags , , , , , , , 1 Comment on Lorna Jane’s comprehensive court win

Amy Louise Robinson was employed by activewear company Lorna Jane Pty Ltd between July and December 2012 as manager of Lorna Jane’s DFO store at Skygate near Brisbane Airport.

Ms Robinson claimed to have suffered a psychiatric injury from workplace bullying by Megan McCarthy (Lorna Jane’s learning and development manager) and haemorrhoids when lifting and moving heavy boxes of stock during the course of her employment.

Relevant law

Vicarious liability is a common law principle which imposes liability despite the employer’s not itself being at fault. The claim for psychiatric injury alleged that Lorna Jane was vicariously liable for the actions of McCarthy and also that an email from a former DFO store employee named Ms Maninnen which alleged ill-treatment of Robinson by McCarthy had put the company ‘on notice’ and that it had subsequently failed to investigate.
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How you can save on legal fees

Posted on Categories Legal profession, Professional fees Tags , , 4 Comments on How you can save on legal fees

This post discussed why legal fees tend to be so high. The good news is that as a client there are a number of ways you can reduce your legal fees, as the rest of this article will show.
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The perils of social media for twits

Posted on Categories Defamation Tags , , , , , , , , 1 Comment on The perils of social media for twits

The laws of defamation apply to social media as much as they apply anywhere else:

A FORMER high school student has been ordered to pay $105,000 to a teacher for writing defamatory remarks about her on social media in what is believed to be Australia’s first Twitter defamation case to go to trial.

Former Orange High School student Andrew Farley, 20, made “false allegations” about music teacher Christine Mickle on Twitter and Facebook in 2012, a year after he had left school.

Mr Farley, who had never been taught by Ms Mickle, seemed to bear a grudge against the 58-year-old based on a belief that she had something to do with his father, also a teacher, leaving the school, District Court Judge Michael Elkaim said in his ruling.

“There is absolutely no evidence to substantiate that belief,” Judge Elkaim said. “The effect of the publication on the plaintiff was devastating.’’

Anyone who frequents Twitter (or other social media) on a regular basis would know that false and defamatory assertions are often made about people. In some ways it’s a surprise that it’s taken this long for such a case to result in an award of damages in Australia.

Another twitter defamation case that went to court is that of Liberal pollsters Mark Textor and Lyndon Crosby against former Labor MP Mike Kelly for a tweet Kelly published about push polling.

When people go on social media to rant, they would be well advised to be careful that they do not open themselves to liability for defamation. A right to rant is not the same as a right to defame.

Why are lawyers so expensive?

Posted on Categories Legal profession, Professional fees, Queensland Law Society 1 Comment on Why are lawyers so expensive?

Most complaints about lawyers concern how high their legal fees are. The professional fees charged by lawyers are notorious. When many clients earn an average of $20-40 per hour, it can seem unfair that your lawyers charge you hundreds of dollars per hour. However, as this article will demonstrate, there are reasons why legal fees are so high.
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Identity politics, political correctness and section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act

Posted on Categories Human rights, Judiciary, Liberty Tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , 4 Comments on Identity politics, political correctness and section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act

On 4 November 2016, Judge Jarrett of the Federal Circuit Court of Australia dismissed a claim brought by Cindy Prior under section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth) as a result of posts published on Facebook by students at the Queensland University of Technology that complained of being kicked out of an ‘Indigenous only’ computer lab. This ends a 3 year long legal saga and ordeal for the students concerned.
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Things to do when you separate from your partner

Posted on Categories Family law Leave a comment on Things to do when you separate from your partner

Have you just separated? Are you thinking of separating? If so, here is a list of useful things to do as soon as you can.
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How to be an impressive witness in court

Posted on Categories Evidence, Judiciary Tags , , , , , , , , Leave a comment on How to be an impressive witness in court
Introduction

Witnesses are usually assessed according to their credibility and reliability.

In cases where there are disputes of fact, the performance of the relevant witnesses will be critical, as the case is likely to be determined according to which witnesses are believed and which are not.

This article discusses dome of the do’s and don’ts involved in giving evidence at a hearing.
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Labor MP sued for sliming student

Posted on Categories Defamation, Legal profession, Professional negligence Leave a comment on Labor MP sued for sliming student

Labor Member for the federal seat of Griffith Terri Butler is being sued by one of the university students involved in the infamous case of the Facebook posts which resulted in legal action by a former administrative officer of the University of Technology (QUT) named Cindy Prior.
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Why the girlfriend of Man Haron Monis was convicted of murder

Posted on Categories Criminal law, Domestic violence, Terrorism Leave a comment on Why the girlfriend of Man Haron Monis was convicted of murder
What happened

 

Amirah Droudis, the girlfriend of Lindt siege gunman Man Haron Monis and formerly named Anastasia Droudis, was yesterday convicted (ie found guilty) of the murder of the ex-wife of Monis.

The written judgment of Justice Johnson, delivered after a judge-only trial (due to adverse pre-trial media publicity), is particularly long and detailed. It goes into significant aspects of Monis’ life story because Droudis was intimately involved in them.
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