A magistrates’ court will initially see all criminal court cases. However, if the criminal offence you are accused of is a summary offence you will only need to deal with the magistrates court.
Your case will be sent to the crown court if the summary offence is linked to a more serious offence.
Find Camberwell magistrates’ court at:
Camberwell Green Magistrates’ Court
15 D’Eynsford Road
Contact the court at:
The Court House
1 London Road
What is a summary offence?
If a summary offence is linked to a more serious offence committed at the same time, the case will be sent to the crown court.
There are many offences that fall within the category of a summary offence, including:
- Damage to property
- Anti-social behaviour
- Road traffic offences such as drink driving and driving without a valid licence
- Common assault involving minor injury
Some summary offences can be heard without you being present at court. If you don’t plan to attend court it is essential that you are represented by a specialist criminal defence solicitor in order to secure the best possible outcome in your case.
If you fail to attend court when you are required to do so, the court may issue a warrant for your arrest. In some occasions, you can be found guilty of committing a further criminal offence by failing to attend court, for which you could be sent to prison.
What is a postal requisition?
Previously known as a court summons letter, a postal requisition is an order from the court requiring you to attend on a specified date and time.
If you receive a postal charge or requisition summoning you to appear at Camberwell magistrates’ court, it is important you understand:
- What a postal requisition is
- What the requisition requires you to do by law
- Your next steps
If the alleged offence is classified as a summary offence which will be heard in the magistrates’ court, the court hearing must begin within 6 months from the date when the offence was allegedly committed.
If the court fails to issue the postal requisition within this time, any potential prosecution may be time barred.
The postal requisition will typically require you to provide your intended plea – whether you intend to plead guilty or not guilty to the alleged offence. You should seek expert legal advice is vital at this stage to ensure you’re aware of the implications of your plea.
If you intend to plead guilty to the alleged offence by post and wish the court to deal with the case in your absence, you may wish to include a letter of mitigation with the postal requisition. The letter should explain the circumstances surrounding the offence and is aimed at achieving a more favourable outcome in your case. Once you have returned the postal requisition with your plea, you will receive a letter from the court confirming their decision in the case. If the court states that you must attend a further case hearing, it is strongly recommended that you seek expert legal advice from a experienced criminal defence solicitor.
If you plead guilty to the offence and attend court in person, you may either represent yourself in court or instruct a solicitor to act on your behalf.
Expert legal representation in Camberwell
The criminal defence solicitors at Lawtons can represent you in Camberwell magistrates’ court. We regularly handle criminal cases at courts across London.
Our criminal defence solicitors will work with you to obtain the best possible outcome in your individual case, providing expert legal advice for any criminal charges that have been made against you.
If you are in urgent need of legal assistance or advice from a criminal solicitor in Camberwell, please get in touch with us:
Lawtons Criminal Law Solicitors – London (by appointment only)
330 High Holborn
Telephone: 0203 553 5741
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