The brief of evidence contains a copy of all statements taken (that the prosecution are relying on) in relation to your case. It will contain a copy of your prior criminal history or VicRoads driving history and ticket offences – if you have any. It will also contain photographs or list the media (computer data, telephone intercepts, CCTV etc) that is available to be looked at.
It is often important to have the full brief to make a considered decision about whether you are going to plead guilty or not guilty.
We, as your lawyers, will want to see the full brief unless it is a very simple matter and there is clearly no dispute. The problem with not having a brief is that you may get an unpleasant surprise about what the Police are alleging if you have not seen it.
Court is stressful enough without getting surprised by bad news when you are at Court.
We generally request the brief on the day that we receive your instructions. If the Police do not give us documents then the Court will normally order that they do so at some stage.
The principle behind us getting the brief is that there should not be trial by ambush. You are entitled to know exactly what the Prosecution are alleging and also the evidence that they are basing it on.