Appeal on Driving Whilst Disqualified – Wholly Suspended Sentence

Our client was sentenced to a one-month term of imprisonment following a guilty plea at the Magistrates’ Court on two counts of Driving Whilst Disqualified. He has several priors for traffic offences including drink driving, driving whilst disqualified, and speeding. Some of these charges resulted to immediate terms of imprisonment which he had previously served.

Josh Taaffe represented the client during the appeal at the Melbourne County Court.

It must be noted that our client was diagnosed with a bipolar disorder following his last release from custody. As soon as
diagnosed, he started having treatment which showed promise as he begins to gain stability in his life.

Submissions were made to the court revolving around the fact that the new offences were committed at a time when the client was still trying different medications that could aid in his mental health. During this time, the client was still unstable.

We pointed out to the court that the client’s priors occurred at a time when a psychiatric condition exists but was not treated as it was not yet diagnosed. However, for the new offences, they had occurred at a time when the client’s condition was not yet stabilised; but that treatment has already started and hence he has promising prospects of rehabilitation.

The court was persuaded and ultimately sentenced our client to a wholly suspended sentence.

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