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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71040
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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Hello, My father has been under investigation and ultimately

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My father has been under investigation and ultimately charged (11 counts) of historic abuse against 2 minors in the 1980's. We felt the case was very defendable - for example, the victim statements contained date inaccuracies and other points that were factually incorrect. My father's trial was due to start yesterday and anticipated to run for 4 days. From the moment we arrived at court yesterday, my dad's barrister indicated the case was un-winnable. She asked us to consider a plea bargain but my dad said he wanted a trial. She then applied pressure to accept the plea bargain (guilty to 4 of the charges, the rest dropped). She said if we went to trail we would definitely lose. At one point the clerk of the court knocked on the door and told us the judge was waiting. Ultimately and under massive pressure, my dad (aged 76) agreed to the deal and he pleaded guilty to the 4 charges. The time between him agreeing to the deal and playing guilty was less than 10 minutes. He is due to be sentenced on 01 August. I feel he was put under unfair duress to take the deal and that his barrister was unwilling / unprepared - for example, my sister and I were ringing round witnesses last week because the defence team didn't have their case prepared.
My question is can yesterday's events be rewound or is my dad now stuck with the guilty verdict he gave under duress? If he has to stick with is and face sentencing, what are our options? This really does not feel like justice. His barrister just kept saying that the jury would believe the 2 "victims" and my dad would lose. Very grateful for your advice on yesterday's events.
Alastair L
Thank you for your question. My name is ***** ***** I will try to help with this.
You can always try to vacate a guilty plea but in truth its hard to do especially when a plea was entered upon advice.
Sentencing depends on the facts. Its not really something I could advice upon on this information. If you can tell me more about what he has pleaded to then I would be able to offer more.
4 counts is obviously better than 11 though so it might have been a good deal overall. Corroboration by volume of two witnesses can be a problem depending on the nature of the case and the allegation and their general credibility.
Can I clarify anything for you?
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