#174 Maroochydore Drink Driving

25 Oct 2021  •  29 Views  •  4 Likes

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Join Wiseman Lawyers Traffic Lawyer Andrew Wiseman at Maroochydore Magistrates Court as he represents a client charged with Drink Driving. Watch Andrew explain what happened in the courtroom, along with the outcome which he achieved and how he achieved it.

All right. Today I’m at Maroochydore Magistrates Court. All magistrates court client was charged with high range, drink driving. It was very high range. Reading a 0.242. So high range kicks in at 0.15 and obviously 0.242s well past that, it’s almost five times the legal limit. Worst case of lifetime loss of licence, major minimum is technically six months. But again, that kicks in 0.15. You’re never going to get six months when you’re over point two, particularly when you’re well over 0.2, which my client was. We always say, look, put it this way, if she went by herself with a law that didn’t specialise, she wouldn’t get much change yet of 18 to 24 months so, a year and a half to two years. We always say, if we can get it down under 12 months, it’s a good outcome. Obviously I always try to get in as low as I can, but if we could walk out with 12 months, it’s a good outcome.

And we had that discussion with the client, 0.242, if you expect anything less than 12 with vigorous representation, you’re being unreasonable and if you go there with the guy that did the advancing, you’re not going to get any change out of 18 months. We got it to complete the reformatory course, we get all their clients to do, you got to get references. I drilled down pretty deep into the background, especially some trauma over the last two years and the mental health consequences of that trauma in preparing my submissions. So I put quite a bit of effort into it, no more than I do with any other client but I guess I took a slightly different approach to what I ordinarily would. Prepared my submissions, drove up this morning, met the client at court, again, 0.244, very hard for non-specialists to get it under 18 months.

Ordinarily, it’s quite difficult for me to get it under 12, but I’m normally successful in getting it close to it, but to get it substantially lower than 12 is quite difficult, you got to take a tactical approach, a heart string approach and basically you got to attack it from all angles in preparing and making your submissions. I’m not going to go into details because it’s quite personal to the client but I basically took the words out of both the prosecutor and the magistrate’s mouth. It was quite an unfortunate story and there wasn’t a great deal to say by the time I was done, other than the magistrate giving their penalty. Look, you can’t get a work licence when you’re high range, so that was never an option. So my job was one of getting it down as low as possible but in addition to that, given she’s a qualified JP and there was other reasons.

Look, this is not a criminal matter, it’s a traffic matter, it’s ordinarily quite difficult to make eviction recorded for low or mid range. Given it’s not a criminal conviction, it’s a traffic conviction. If it was a criminal conviction, yes, there’d be consequences, but it’s a traffic conviction. There’s really, you’re pulling or drawing a long bow to try and convince and magistrate that their world’s going to be turned upside down if they’ve got a traffic conviction. It’s like selling snow to the Eskimos, come on, blah, blah, blah. And the magistrate’s just sitting there going, you’ve given me nothing here. All you’ve given me is just fanciful stories of what might happen in the future, because there’s literally, there’s no documentation that it can be handed up or there is, but it’s not well known and you have to dig hard for it.

The case law says, if you’re pushing for an A conviction recorded, you need to hand up documentary evidence supporting the submission that detriment will result in as a side issue. That case is the matter of Grohls in Dave Grohls and the Foo fighters, he got down for DUI on the gold case about, I don’t know, 15 years ago when he was here for the big day. But anyway, I’m going off point. The case of Grohl tells magistrates that you’ve got to record a conviction of a traffic matter unless there’s some documentary evidence that there’s going to be turmoil. And just for the record, Grohl had a conviction recorded, so he was unsuccessful in trying to get no conviction recorded. But there is little documentation that could be handed up, proving that it’s going to destroy careers and all the rest of it.

So it’s hard to get it for low range and the higher the reading, the less inclined the magistrate is to grant [inaudible] which is recorded it because if you got reading a 0.242, the assumption is, well, no, you got yourself in this mess, people should know about it. But anyway, look, I did make substantive verbal submissions on that point as well, given it was important to the client. So again, my job was getting it down as low as possible disqualification wise, push as hard as I can for an A eviction recorded but again, I explained to the client that the odds are, it will be recorded over at not being given the reading.

But I was ultimately successful on both fronts, got the disqualification now to 10 months and as I said, that’s a reading of 0.242, so 10 months is very good. 12 months would’ve been very good, 10 months is excellent. It was never going to be any less than that for the reading like that, 0.242. Reasonable fine, and I was also after some tap dancing, successful dissuading the magistrate not to record a conviction. So 10 months of qualification for a reading of 0.242 minus the fine [inaudible] recorded client, as you would expect his relief, very happy. I’m Andrew Wiseman at Maroochydore Magistrates Court. Thanks for watching.