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Old 10-17-2001, 21:42   #1 (permalink)
My Neck Hurts....
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Rutherford
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More Speeding

I got hit too, but in a different way.

Last Friday, driving home, I was caught by a copper at the bottom of a small dip. Now I pride myself on staying under the limit, but on this street, my car coasted up to 76 in a 60 zone - a period of about 3 - 4 seconds I believe - before I braked. I saw a flash from the side of my eye from the opposite side of the road, and sure enough, it was a police car.

But the car had to go the opposite direction to find a gap in the median strip before he could do a U turn. In that time, I had lost site of him around a bend and a round about.

So my question is this - is it entrapment for a police car to be sitting out of site like that? Are they supposed to be visible from a certain distance or have a sign out or something?

And are they supposed to keep you in sight from the time they trap you to the time they pull you over?

I'm dirty about driving on the speed limit day after day, and getting overtaken all the time by cars that are doing 20-30km over the limit, but I'm the one that gets booked!

I'll certainly make sure I keep my eyes plastered on the speedo and never look at the road again.

It's just not right.


Lukeyson
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Old 10-17-2001, 21:53   #2 (permalink)
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Where do you live and where was this infringement made? If you saw a flash it would have been a camera and they don't have to come after you.

One note; I would have to check, but my understanding is speed cameras cannot operate with a flash pointing AT the traffic (due to vision issues).

Need to know where you live. I only know NSW/ACT stuff.
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Old 10-17-2001, 21:57   #3 (permalink)
My Neck Hurts....
 
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No, it was the flash of the lights on his car. No camera involved. And I'm in the Hunter Region, NSW.

Lukeyson
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Old 10-17-2001, 21:58   #4 (permalink)
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Having spoken to many people, I will post a case study of one of the infringements I beat in the near future.

If you received a Speed Camera offence on the Hume Highway at Liverpool, this may save you a heap of money!
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Old 10-17-2001, 22:01   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Luke Plaizier
No, it was the flash of the lights on his car. No camera involved.

Lukeyson
Same stuff applies as for RATT. Was it a built up area? Yes. as there other traffic? xxx. Was the median strip raised? xxx Was the police car's radio on (aerial up)? xxx Were there signs, fences or other reflective objects in the field of the radar beam? xxx

Another customer for AS 2898 I believe!
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'General' Dog - AP's German Shepherd and Best Mate - 02Dec1998-15Dec2003.
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Old 10-18-2001, 05:05   #6 (permalink)
 
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Aussie Pete, what would we do without ya?! hehe
it's good to have one of you guys on our side. :)

like your work! :)
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Old 10-18-2001, 17:36   #7 (permalink)
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Re: More Speeding

Quote:
Originally posted by Luke Plaizier
I got hit too, but in a different way.


So my question is this - is it entrapment for a police car to be sitting out of site like that? Are they supposed to be visible from a certain distance or have a sign out or something?

And are they supposed to keep you in sight from the time they trap you to the time they pull you over?


Lukeyson
It's not entrapment. Entrapment is when police induce an offence that wouldn't have been committed otherwise. Subject to Aussie Pete advising about different specifics in NSW, general principle is that police are entitled to conceal themselves to detect an offence.

Again subject to Aussie Pete's specific advice, general principle is that there is no requirement to keep an offender in view after an offence. It's only a question of identity. If the copper recognised your car later from his earlier observation then he can ping you. If it goes to court he'll probably say he noted make and colour and reg no of your car, and if he pinged you with radar court will probably accept that he had sufficient view to note these things. However, you can cross-examine him on the details to suggest he couldn't have got that much info in time and view available, like how long were you in view, did he have clear view of your rego plate, how much other traffice, how many other cars of same make and colour went through around same time, how long was interval between seeing you and apprehending you, how can he be sure it was your car and not another same make, did he write down reg no before chasing you and if he says yes then ask him where he noted it and after he's committed himself on that you then ask him to produce note and if it's on his running sheet or patrol report or whatever they call it up there or in his notebook he should have it available (he's got obvious problems if he can't or won't produce these documents, and even if he says he put it on something else that's been lost then you run line he knew it was critical piece of evidence and he's experienced cop so why didn't he keep it, so either way you run line he's relying on getting your rego after he apprehended you and you are undermining his credibility). If he was alone you've a better chance than if he's got an observer to back him up and note details. Your case probably doesn't have scope to run this, but remember it's the driver that commits the offence, not the car, so he has to satisfy the court beyond reasonable doubt that you were the driver as well as that it was the car he pinged. If there's only a short interval magistrate will probably accept that you were driving at time of offence, although there's no point if this is an offence where owner onus applies. Remember that the prosecution has to prove every element of the offence. You don't have to prove you didn't do it. If prosecution fails to put in any evidence (i.e. copper saying so in evidence) that it was you that was driving, you wait for it to conclude case and ask prosecutor if he has put in all evidence he relies on and has concluded case, then submit to magistrate that there's no case to answer as there's no evidence that you committed the offence charged. Prosecution will then try to reopen case and you submit they can't because they've closed. In Vic they are usually allowed to reopen case, but it's always worth a try. If magistrate upholds your submission you've won. No case submission applies to every element of offence, so get the relevant law and see what prosecution has to prove, make a list, and check it off during evidence, but don't let prosecutor see it or it might remind him to prove something. You'll sometimes get up on a technical point, like they fail to prove that the machine has been tested within the period required by the legislation.
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Old 10-18-2001, 18:10   #8 (permalink)
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All good points EA S.

In my experience the prosecutors turn up and hardly prepare for these cases. In fact, they are often blatantly disrespectful of the case and the process. That is why I make a fully prepared list and take copious notes of what is occurring during the submissions. I find it helpful to ask for a short recess while I study the notes before making final submissions. A magistrate will almost always agree as they usually have a large number of cases to get through on the day.

The key is to make sure you have EVERYTHING covered before close as EA S mentioned. It's too late to add 'obvious' issues after the decision!
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'Sako' Dog - My Beautiful and Pretty German Shepherd - 2001?-23Aug2006.
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Old 10-18-2001, 18:34   #9 (permalink)
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Aussie Pete

Our prosecutors are pretty good in general and sound better than yours, although inevitably there's some prize ar*eholes amongst them.

The process here is that the informant prepares a brief (which the defendant has a right to get well before the hearing, so you know the guts of the case and have the witness statements beforehand) and sends it to the prosecutor. If you're defending, it's set down for a preliminary hearing to refine the issues and to get an indication of sentence if the defendant is considering a guilty plea. If you've got a decent defence or there's a serious hole in the case you can often persuade the prosecutor to pull it at that point, although it requires the informant's consent which is sometimes levered out of them by the prosecutors as most of them don't want to run losers. The other incentive not to run a fatally flawed case is that the defendant can get their legal costs paid by the police if they win, which should also apply in NSW unless that's been legislated out.
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Old 10-18-2001, 20:03   #10 (permalink)
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I have pursued costs but it is extremely hard when you run your own case.
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'General' Dog - AP's German Shepherd and Best Mate - 02Dec1998-15Dec2003.
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