Criminal Law Experience
During the 1990’s, I worked as a Prosecutor within the Local and Children’s Courts of NSW, appearing in criminal proceedings as well as related application proceedings. I also regularly appeared assisting the Coroner in numerous inquests/inquiries in the Coroners Court.
In 1999 I commenced employment as a solicitor with the Legal Aid Commission of NSW at it's Wagga Wagga Regional Office. Whilst employed in that capacity, I travelled to numerous courts on different magistrate’s circuits within the Riverina area of NSW. My responsibilities as a solicitor with the Legal Aid Commission were principally concerned with the representation of those prosecuted for offences dealt with in the Local and Children’s Courts, as well as representation in committal proceedings. I also appeared in numerous severity/conviction appeals in the District Court for clients of the Commission, as well as instructing Public Defenders and members of the private Bar in numerous trials and sentence proceedings within the District Court of NSW.
I commenced practice as a Barrister in NSW in 2002. My practice at the Bar was principally in criminal law and I have appeared in over 100 jury trials in the District and Supreme Courts. I have appeared in numerous District Court severity/conviction appeals, sentence proceedings and interlocutory matters. I have also appeared in countless Local and Children’s Court hearings, sentence and committal proceedings. I have provided written advice to clients on briefs, including merit advices for appeals.
I have regularly travelled on country circuits to appear in court proceedings, whether it be District, Local or Children’s Court. I have developed significant knowledge of the cities/towns of the South West of NSW, and frequently appear in the Wagga Wagga, Albury and Griffith District Courts.
I have appeared for parties from a wide spectrum of the community, and have through this experience developed knowledge of the issues facing those at risk within society, including the disabled and the socially disadvantaged, as well as a sound appreciation of the varied issues relating to Aboriginal people. This experience has similarly equipped me with effective and appropriate communication skills with clients/witnesses.
I have acted as counsel retained by solicitors, and on a direct access basis. I have been retained frequently on a private basis, as well as by statutory and corporate entities, such as the Legal Aid Commission of NSW, the former Central Southern Aboriginal Legal Service, and the current NSW Aboriginal Legal Service NSW/ACT. I have also appeared before the Coroners Court, Federal Magistrates Court, the Victims Compensation Tribunal and Administrative Decisions Tribunal as Counsel.
I was a member of the NSW Bar Association’s Criminal Law Committee in 2009.
In January 2014, the law firm Pennicott Weir Lawyers was established, and I now practice as a partner and director in that firm. It has offices in Canberra and Wagga Wagga.
Since 2007, I have frequently provided telephone advice to intellectually disabled persons in police custody after hours, via the Criminal Justice Support Network (CJSN); an initiative of the Intellectual Disability Rights Service (IDRS). Such advice had focused principally on police interviews and forensic procedures.
48 Fitzmaurice St,
Wagga Wagga 2650,NSW
P: 0429 452 225
F: 02 69717137