- Search Warrants
- Without Search Warrants
- What to do if contacted by Police
- Police Questioning
- Where a Police Officer demands your name & address
- Right to Speak With a Lawyer
- Right to Silence
When a Police officer is asking you questions about a particular offence you must avoid obstructing the Police or being belligerent. You should remain polite and stand firm on your rights.
RIGHT TO SILENCE
Except for the obligation to state your name and address and birthdate you have a general right of silence. The Police cannot force you to give any information about where you were at a specific time, what you were doing, who you were with or any other information. Police certainly cannot make you give a statement. Giving a statement is a serious act and you should never make a statement until you have consulted a lawyer.
Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. If the Police are seeking a record of interview, there is a high probability you are the main suspect. Often Police use the record of interview to identify inconsistencies between your version of the facts and evidence. Records of interviews are often more help to the Police than to the accused. Exercise your right of silence. If you are under pressure to talk demand to speak with your lawyer. Police are obliged to allow you to have contact with your lawyer.
ELECTRONIC RECORDING OF INTERVIEW
If you are being interviewed by the Police, The questioning must, if practicable, be electronically recorded.
It is advisable to always insist any interviews are recorded. If you have requested a lawyer or friend be present and the Police have not allowed you to have these people present, ensure you state this on the recording and that you wish to wait for them to arrive.
DETENTION AT STATION
There are limited circumstances where you are obliged to accompany a Police officer to the station. Where the Police Officer requests you to accompany them to the station, ask them if you have a choice. Remain calm and be polite, but insist to know if you have a choice and why you are being taken to the station.
The Police can force you to go to the station:
- You are being detained under the Drug Misuse Act; or
- When you are arrested.
If the Police are arresting you do not resist arrest. Your best option in this situation is to demand to speak with your lawyer and remain silent.
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