Appeals to the Court of Appeal
The Criminal Procedure Act:
The Court of Appeal hears matters directly from the County and Supreme Courts. Under section 274 of the Criminal Procedure Act an accused has the right to seek leave to appeal against conviction. Under section 278 an accused has the right to seek leave to appeal against sentence. Ultimately an application can and often will proceed on both fronts. Under section 275 and section 279, leave applications must be filed in accordance with the practice directions of the Court, presently, within 28 days after the person is sentenced. Unlike appeals from the Magistrate’s Court to the County Court, there is no guarantee that an application for leave to appeal will be granted.
Not to be taken lightly:
There is a huge amount of work that must be completed to file a leave application. In regard to an appeal against conviction, trial transcripts must be obtained and in regard to an appeal against sentence, sentencing remarks must be obtained and ultimately in regard to both applications, instructions must be sought. Unfortunately the practice directions of the Court of Appeal have now changed requiring fully developed written submissions as opposed to the skeleton grounds previously required. These grounds now must be submitted to the Court of Appeal registry within 28 days to lodge the application. If they are not submitted within the prescribed time under section 313 of the Criminal Procedure Act an affidavit must be filed with the leave application, seeking an extension of time in regard to submitting the leave application. If the leave application is not submitted in time there is no guarantee that the application to submit out of time will be granted. It is critical you seek legal advice when appealing from the above-mentioned Courts. It is a technical area of law and needs to be handled by criminal lawyers with experience in the appellant Courts.
Click here to see the Test regarding appeals to the Superior Courts