Appeals to the County Court – Criminal Procedure Act
Following a decision in the Magistrates’ Court, a defendant has 28 days to lodge an appeal against sentence and conviction with the registrar of the Magistrates’ Court under section 255 of the Criminal Procedure Act.
Notice on the Informant regarding County Court Appeals
The informant (the police officer who initiated the original charges) must be notified of the appeal within 7 days and the matter will be heard de novo (from the beginning), at the County Court.
The advantage of the matter being heard in the County Court, particularly for appeals against sentence, is that matters are not rushed. As opposed to the hundred cases that might proceed at the Magistrates’ Court in one day, the Judge sitting in the County Court hearing appeals will in most cases only hear three to four cases per day. This allows time for complete submissions to be made.
You are entitled to appeal your decision
Prior to appealing any decision it is always important to talk to a lawyer to ensure that you follow the right procedure. We handle a large number of appeals to the County Court each year. If you feel that justice was not served when your matter was heard, call our office today to talk to a criminal lawyer about how you might go about appealing your case to the County Court.