Police Station Representation
"We do our best to provide you with excellent customer service.
Our telephone lines are open Monday through Friday from 9am-5.30pm, and we strive to respond to all methods of communication within 24 hours – but we are available 24 hours a day if someone is arrested at the police station.Our offices are closed on weekends as well as all major holidays." - www.amosurobinshaw.com
This is arguably the most important stage of criminal proceedings for individuals who find themselves subject to a police investigation. The advice an individual receives can shape and determine whether the police have enough evidence to present to the reviewing officer or Crown Prosecution Service in the determination of a charge. Putting forward an alibi or advising a client to answer ‘no comment’ for strategic reasons is one of the decisions us, as skilled lawyers and representatives, must make at the police station.Police station representation is free of charge.
It is important that if you do not buy into the myth that your solicitor will only delay you being released. In fact, without having legal advice in person, could mean you are detained for a longer period than necessary. The police are trained in their practices and procedures. You too are entitled to a skilled person equally trained in police powers and procedures. Please ensure you contact us for representation at the police station.
If you are currently on police bail awaiting return to the police station, please contact us. We will make efforts to contact the police on your behalf to find out what will happen when you next attend. We are also happy to discuss your outstanding investigation with you.
EMERGENCY NUMBER 07709 431 885 - www.amosurobinshaw.com
How Amosu Robinshaw Solicitors can assist you
+ Funding Your Case
Police Station An individual will receive free advice if they have requested us specifically without requesting a Duty Solicitor or have not used another firm previously. Private Rates apply in all others circumstances or indeed if an individual wishes to instruct us privately from the outset.
Magistrates’ Court Merits and Means Testing Legal Aid
Merits If your case is seen as warranting free legal advice you must fulfil the criteria for interests of justice, which ranges from:
A potential risk of Custody Being in Breach of an Order Complex area of law Case needing Expert cross-examination Witnesses that have to be traced It is in the interests of justice for other people to be represented If your case features the above then there is a strong chance you will satisfy the test for legal aid in which the assessment is that, it is in the interests of justice for an individual to be represented.
Means An individual would then have to satisfy the Means Test:
If an adult is on a “passported benefit” then they will automatically satisfy the Means Test. If an adult is not on benefits and they have evidence of fact that their income is less than approximately £13,000 per annum i.e. wage slips, income from other sources for example student loans etc, then they will satisfy their Means Test. An individual with an income over £13,000 may still satisfy the Means Test if they can show they have the necessary expenditure over the specified threshold and document these expenses.Alternatively, an individual will have to privately fund their representation. Private rates can be provided by contacting us directly. If you pay privately and you are acquitted, then you may be entitled to recover your costs (at legal aid rates only). Further details can be provided on request.
Crown Court A new system of Means Testing has recently been introduced in the Crown Court. If you are claiming a “passported benefit”, then you will automatically qualify for legal aid. Alternatively you may have to make a contribution to your defence costs if you are in employment or are receiving a specified income.
If you are successfully acquitted in the Crown Court, then you will get back any contributions you have made, with interest unless you have disposable income/assets over the prescribed amount (currently £37,000), in which case you will have to pay privately and will receive a reimbursement up to the amount you would’ve had to have paid on legal aid, if acquitted.
+ Your Rights
In England & Wales all Prosecution Authorities must act in accordance with the rules as governed by case law, statue or codes of practice.
These Prosecuting Authorities i.e. police, immigration officers, department of Work & Pensions, Customs & Excise can not exceed their powers.
It is important that each citizen of England & Wales knows their rights and be aware that their liberty can be protected by a variety of rights and entitlements.
+ Stop and Search
If an individual is stopped and searched by the police, the police have to have “reasonable grounds” to do so. This is an objective test and clearly common sense must be exercised. For example, if there has been a report of burglary and the description is of an Asian male and the individual searched is a white female, clearly the search is unlawful.
The Police do have the power to stop and search anyone under Terrorism legislation. They do have the power to stop and search without having to have grounds.
You can also be stopped and searched under Section 60 of The Criminal Justice & Public Order Act 1994 when an area is designated by the Superintendents being one prone to anti social behaviour or high in crime. (Where a Section 60 is in place, the police do not have to have reasonable grounds). This predominantly applies to young people however, if a young person is continually stopped this may constitute harassment and may give rise to a complaint.
How an individual conducts themselves when being stopped by the police, has a massive bearing on whether a potential public order offence will arise.
The above is just an example of your rights relating to police powers and Amosu Robinshaw are willing and are able to come in and speak to Community Groups regarding rights of the individual and discuss scenarios/role plays to avoid difficult situations arising.
+ Criminal Justice System
Advice & Assistance (Advice at Police Station or other Interviews under Caution) In 95% of cases which result in an individual having to attend Court as a defendant, that individual would have been interviewed under Caution. Invariably the individual would have been arrested before interview. On some occasions, i.e. benefit fraud, investigations under The Telecommunications Act or Royal Mail investigations, individuals are not arrested. Whatever the reason for an interview, Amosu Robinshaw is very experienced in providing advice and assistance. If you have been arrested, the police have to act in accordance with The Police & Criminal Evidence Act (PACE). Our Solicitors make a point of attending the police station as often as possible and are best placed to ensure you are treated fairly.
WE ARE AVAILABLE 24 HOURS A DAY 365 DAYS PER WEEK Advice at the police station is free of charge as long as you specifically request us and you haven’t received free representation at the police station beforehand.
Magistrates’ Court Representation If an individual finds that they have to appear before the Magistrates’ Court either overnight in custody, or on bail or by way of summons, we can attend on their behalf. Everyone who has been charged with a criminal offence in England & Wales, must firstly appear before the Magistrates’ Court. Where the case is subsequently heard depends on the seriousness of the case.
“Summary only” cases such as:
- Common Assault
- Criminal Damage under £5,000
- Low Level Public Order offences
- Road Traffic Offences (This list is non exhaustive) These can only be dealt with the in Magistrates’ Court.
“Either-Way” offences such as:
- some Sexual Offences
- more serious Public Order offences
- Actual Bodily Harm
- Grievous Bodily Harm (Wounding) These can be dealt with either in the Magistrates’ Court or Crown Court depending on whether the individual wishes (elects) to have their case heard at either Court or the Court itself declines jurisdiction and commits the case to the Crown Court, on the basis it does not have sufficient sentencing powers to deal with the case, should that individual subsequently plead guilty or be found guilty.
“Indictable-Only” offences such as:
- Burglary with aggravating features
- Any type of Conspiracy
- Grievous Bodily Harm with Intent These must be transferred to the Crown Court straightaway, but must begin in the Magistrates’ Court.
We can represent you in the Magistrates’ Court and have vast experience of dealing with all types of cases in the Magistrates’ Court. Whether an individual is pleading guilty or not guilty and subsequently has a trial, we can advise and assist you.
Crown Court An individual case can reach the Crown Court in a variety of ways i.e. being committed via committal proceedings, following an election of Jury trial from the individual or the Court declining jurisdiction or a transfer to the Crown Court because the individual is charged with an indictable-only offence.
In the Crown Court the individual case is heard in front of a Crown Court Judge and the individual is represented by a Barrister or a Higher Courts Advocate. We have three qualified Higher Courts Advocates in our team however we regularly instruct Barristers by virtue of choice of the individual or particular specialism of the Barrister.
Should an individual be pleading guilty or having a trial, as per the ethos of the firm, we will ensure your case is prepared fully to the best of our ability to put the individual in a strong position to defend themselves.
Young People & The Law If a youth is arrested then they are classified as juveniles if they are under 18.
If the Youth is under 18, they require an Appropriate Adult to act on their behalf in order to facilitate communication and to protect the rights of the young person. Invariably, the appropriate adult doesn’t have to do much because the legal representative is well placed to protect the young person.
A young person is classed as a Youth if he is under 18 in the Youth Court. We have particular expertise in dealing with young people in the Youth Court which is arguably a completely separate area of criminal law.
There is a variety of legislation which must be considered when dealing with young people. Again, we can advise any young people who face the prospect of having to attend Court.