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what to do if you are arrestedBy Nic Kernahan, Johnston Withers, Lawyers, Adelaide.

Many people do not fully understand their legal rights after they have been arrested – in Australia or elsewhere. Certainly, being arrested is a very stressful time for the vast majority of people, most likely a once-in-a-lifetime event. That said, it does happen and it can happen to, literally, anyone. So, while you may think the following is advice you will never need, we’ve collated a list of what to do and what to avoid if you are arrested or stopped by the police.

What to do:

  • Alway be polite to the officers concerned, and to any administration staff with whom you have contact.
  • When asked, you are required to give your name and address.
  • You are entitled to ask politely why you have been arrested.
  • At the first opportunity, you should tell the police you wish to apply for bail.

What to avoid:

  • During and after your arrest, it is important that you don’t argue with the police.
  • Don’t resist arrest.
  • It is also important that you do not plead guilty or say you intend to plead guilty until you have consulted a lawyer.
  • You are only required to give your name and address, so we recommend that you do not answer any questions, give a statement or sign anything until you have spoken to a lawyer.

After you have been arrested, in Australia at least, you are entitled to telephone a friend or a lawyer.  We recommend you call one of our MSI Global Alliance advisers. We’re available and one of our specialist criminal lawyers can call you back. Anything you say to your lawyer will be totally confidential.

Contact the author directly by email or by telephone.

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