Diversion for Engaging in Riotous Behaviour

This is a case study on a successful application for diversion for engaging in riotous behaviour.

What is alleged to have occured?
Our client and his friends were out at a pub in Richmond. A crowd had gathered outside as the venue was closing and a fight broke out between the client’s friend and another patron. A number of men, including the client, became involved in the fight. One of the men from the other group received injuries.

Some of the incident was captured on CCTV. The police also took statements from a number of people who had observed what had occurred. Our client was charged with affray and injury charges.

What happened at court?
Kristina Kothrakis acted on the client’s behalf at the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court. The charges were:

The scene on the night was very chaotic. This was evident on the portion seen from the CCTV. Each of the witness statements were slightly different, so piecing together who did what was difficult. There was one witness statement which seemed to identify the client as being one of the men involved in punching and kicking the main victim. This could not be seen on the CCTV but it was evident that the client was involved in some capacity. The client denied that he punched or kicked anyone.

The client was in his late 20’s and had no prior criminal history. Our assessment was that the police would have difficulty proving our client as responsible for causing the injury. We were on less solid ground in relation to the affray, as the police are only required to prove that the client was involved in the fight, which occurred in a public place where onlookers would be frightened.

Our client’s primary objective was to not receive a criminal record. In order to achieve this, he would have to either run a contested hearing and be found not guilty of all the charges, or to receive a diversion. At each stage of the matter, we pressed the prosecution to consider a diversion on a lesser charge of engaging in riotous behaviour. They refused to recommend diversion.

What was the result?
We proceeded to plead not guilty and got to the hearing date. Kristina prepared a further submission in relation to diversion to the allocated prosecutor, which highlighted the evidentiary issues they had and attached character references relating to the client. She was ultimately successful in having them recommend diversion on the riotous behaviour, with reference to the punching and kicking removed.

Persistence paid off in this instance. Our in-house counsel appeared at the diversion hearing which turned out to be successful.

Kristina KothrakisKristina Kothrakis

Kristina has significant experience in criminal trials and also holds a degree in Science, majoring in Psychology, an invaluable area of knowledge, as many of her clients suffer from psychological disorders.

Kristina strives to achieve the best possible result for all her clients. Skilled, decisive and assertive, Kristina demonstrates dedication, care and professionalism at all times.

View Kristina Kothrakis’ profile.
DISCLAIMER: This is a real case study of an actual case from our files. Details pertaining to the client have been changed to protect their privacy. The sentence imposed and the charge have not been altered. These case studies are published to demonstrate real outcomes and give an indication of possible tariffs in Court. We do not guarantee a similar case on these charges will get the same result. Please note that we post results at our discretion, therefore while many case studies are average results, others are notable for their exceptional outcomes. PUBLISHED 26/02/2018