12 March 2020
Have you been convicted of an offence you didn’t commit?
In the criminal courts in the UK, a decision of conviction or sentencing doesn’t have to be the final conclusion. A defendant has the option to appeal the conviction and or sentence if they are able to argue that the conviction was unsafe or the sentence was too harsh.
If your case was originally heard in the Magistrates Court you could appeal to the Crown Court and if unsuccessful at appeal take it to the Court of Appeal. You must appeal within 21 days of your Magistrates Court trial. If you pleaded not guilty at trial and were convicted you can appeal against your conviction and or sentence. If you pleaded guilty then you only are able to appeal your sentence. The appeal will be heard before a Judge and two magistrates in the Crown Court. If appealing conviction the same evidence from the original trial will be heard, if you have new evidence this could also be used to support your case.
If your case was originally heard in the Crown Court you can appeal to the Court of Appeal. You have 28 days to appeal the decision. If you pleaded not guilty at trial and were convicted you can appeal the conviction and or sentence if you can show that something went ‘wrong’ at trial. This would need to be either the Judge not applying the law correctly, getting the law incorrect or the correct Court procedure not being followed. If appealing conviction you will normally need to introduce new evidence that was not available at your original trial. If you are appealing sentence you will need to demonstrate that the sentence was either wrong in principal or excessive in length.
We have a specialist criminal team who can provide you with a second opinion, advise you and represent you if you in appealing your conviction and or sentence.
James Constable in our criminal team recently successfully appealed the length of a client’s sentence in the Court of Appeal. The defendant had his sentence reduced by a quarter. If you would like to discuss your options please contact James Constable at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01753 279039.