Sunday, April 19, 2009

25 Laws of Being a Criminal Defence Lawyer

1) Everyone lies; trust no one but the evidence.
2) Juries thinks a defendant is guilty the first moment they lay eyes on you: you have to convince them otherwise.
3) The right to silence is the most powerful and under appreciated right an individual has.
4) Everyone chose sides and everyone wants to win: police, prosecutors, witnesses, lawyers, and accused. 
5) For better and worse, judges are human.
6) The simplest explanation is the most persuasive, but it is probably not the truth.
7) Saying "sorry" means a lot no matter how serious you are in trouble;
8) There is too much reliance on expert evidence;
9) You must be paid up front for your services;
10) Prepare, prepare, prepare, and when you are done doing that, prepare some more;
11) Juries and judges want to hear an explanation, regardless of your right to silence;
12) Liars can convince themselves in their own deceit;
13) Crack cocaine and crystal meth will destroy you;
14) You must leave the battle turmoil in the arena;
15) Innocent people are convicted of offences they did not commit;
16) Guilty people are acquitted of offences they did commit;
17) Laziness begats injustice;
18) 95% of victories are won outside the Court;
19) Cross examinations are fun, but cases are won in chief
20) Jail is an awful, unimaginably horrible place that very few people truly appreciate;
21) We are hated by the general public;
22) Politicians, police, and prosecutors are never satisfied with enough powers;
23) People can be rehabilitated;
24) You can make a difference in individuals and society; and lastly,
25) There are few things more exhilarating than a "not-guilty" verdict being read out from a jury box; the converse also holds true.

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