Andrew Anderson has a proven history of success as a lawyer.

Andrew Anderson has helped numerous people to succeed in complex and difficult cases across Australia. He can help you.

Andrew Anderson has a proven history of success as a lawyer.

Andrew Anderson has helped numerous people to succeed in complex and difficult cases across Australia. He can help you.

Why this firm should be your first choice

Why this firm should be your first choice

About Andrew Anderson, and why to choose him

Andrew Anderson, Legal Director, is an award-winning lawyer who is independently recommended as being among the leading corporate crime, white-collar crime and regulatory investigations lawyers in Australia, as well as a leading criminal defence lawyer in Queensland.
Having successfully represented litigants in the High Court of Australia, Queensland Court of Appeal, Royal Commissions and multiple other courts dealing with trials and other hearings, Andrew Anderson understands how to succeed in complex and difficult cases.
Andrew Anderson has worked as a Principal Crown Prosecutor in Queensland and barrister in private practice at 8 Petrie Terrace Chambers in Brisbane. His depth of courtroom advocacy experience ranges from simple cases right through to complex homicide trials and appeals.
Andrew Anderson operates a law firm that is dedicated to the best ideals of the legal profession. Seeking to exceed client expectations and fighting for justice is an everyday pursuit.

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Learn more about his expertise and experience

Many legal issues are, or have the capacity to be significant life events. Knowing you can have trust and confidence in the lawyer representing you is essential.

On a daily basis, Andrew Anderson applies his skills and knowledge to guide clients through difficult, complex and serious problems. As may be seen from publicly accessible cases and law reports, his expertise and experience speaks for itself:

Appeals before the High Court

As a skilled barrister, Andrew Anderson was briefed in a number of notable cases before the High Court of Australia. As a solicitor, Andrew was engaged by Steven Fennell to represent him in his high-profile appeal to the High Court, which ultimately saw his wrongful conviction for murder overturned.

Being able to secure successful outcomes in the High Court of Australia takes more than understanding the court and knowing the law. It is necessary to articulate the policies and principles that underlie why the proposed ground of appeal matters. In order to have an appeal heard, it is often necessary to be granted ‘special leave’ to appeal. Without a specialised understanding of the unique challenges of appeals before the High Court, it is possible an opportunity to secure a just result will be missed.

Andrew’s appellate experience before the High Court involves establishing an unreasonable verdict for murder, as well as appeals concerning the rules of evidence for violent and sexual offences. He also has appeared in appeals dealing with the constitutional guarantee of jury trials for certain crimes under the Australian Constitution:

If you seek a skilled lawyer with demonstrated experience in successfully handling appeals before the High Court of Australia, contact Andrew Anderson.

Court of Appeal Experience

As both a solicitor and barrister, Andrew Anderson has successfully appeared as the lead advocate in multiple appeals before the Queensland Court of Appeal. He has also instructed Queens Counsel and other barristers in successful appeals while practising as a solicitor. In recognition of his work and capacity, Andrew has also been briefed as junior counsel to work with both the Solicitor-General and the Director of Public Prosecutions in representing the Attorney-General for the State of Queensland.

Selected examples of successful appeals before the Court of Appeal in which Andrew appeared include:

In representing clients to appeal against a conviction or sentence, Andrew works with some of the leading Queens Counsel and other barristers in Australia. Selected examples of this work includes:

If you seek a skilled lawyer with demonstrated experience in successfully representing individuals before the Queensland Court of Appeal, contact Andrew Anderson.

Jury Trials & Advocacy

Unlike many solicitors, Andrew has conducted numerous jury trials as a barrister and advocate. The experience of actually cross-examining witnesses before jurors, or delivering a closing address to a jury, represents an additional layer of knowledge and expertise few solicitors possess. In working with leading Queens Counsel and other barristers, Andrew’s experience provides real depth to the preparation and coordination of a defence case.

Andrew has appeared as lead counsel in trials dealing with the following homicide offences:

Due to the preciousness of life, homicide trials are not only regarded the most serious charges in the legal system, they often involve the greatest stakes both for the person accused of the crime and society at large. As a lawyer with significant trial experience, Andrew is able to competently and confidently guide individuals through the legal processes involved in homicide offences.

Andrew has appeared as lead counsel in trials dealing with the following violent offences:

In Queensland, certain violent offences may be declared ‘serious violent offences’, which can mean a person convicted may face serving 80% of their sentence before being eligible for parole. An experienced criminal lawyer can make a difference in defending a charge involving a violent offence. Andrew has demonstrated experience in successfully preparing and conducting trials for violent offences.

Andrew has appeared as lead counsel in trials for the following sexual offences:

  • Assault with intent to rape
  • Indecent treatment of a child
  • Maintaining a sexual relationship with a child
  • Possession of child exploitation material
  • Sexual Assault
  • Rape

It is not well understood in the community that certain sexual offences may be declared ‘serious violent offences’ in Queensland, which can mean a person convicted may face serving 80% of their sentence before being eligible for parole. Prosecuting and defending individuals charged with sexual offences can be complex, particularly due to the rules of evidence and issues associated with corroboration. As a lawyer who has worked on numerous cases involving sexual offences, including in the High Court of Australia, Andrew has demonstrated experience in successfully litigating serious charges of this nature.

Andrew has appeared as lead counsel in trials dealing with the following drug offences:

  • Trafficking in dangerous drugs
  • Supplying dangerous drugs

He has significant experience in representing individuals charged with drug offences, from simple drug possession cases that may be dealt with in the Magistrates Court, right through to drug importation offences in the Supreme Court of Queensland.

Drug offences in Queensland can result in lengthy prison sentences. However, even less serious offences, which sometimes may result in only a fine, can still have a significant impact on a person. A conviction for drug offending can affect international travel plans, as well as employment licences and opportunities. Early advice from an experienced lawyer can make a difference in the ultimate outcome for drug offences.

Andrew has significant experience in assisting people charged with dishonesty offences, including the following:

  • Fraud
  • Stealing
  • Receiving tainted property

An experienced criminal lawyer can make a difference in defending a charge involving an element of dishonesty, particularly when expert evidence from forensic accountants or other experts is involved. If you or a family member are charged with an offence involving an allegation of dishonesty, contact a law firm that has the skills and experience to assist.

Andrew has significant experience in assisting people with driving offences, including:

  • Dangerous operation of a vehicle causing death
  • Dangerous operation of a vehicle
  • Careless driving
  • Drink driving
  • Drug driving

In Queensland, some traffic and driving offences carry mandatory minimum penalties. They are offences that often concern people who have no experience of criminal law issues or court proceedings. An experienced  lawyer can make a difference in defending charges involving traffic and driving issues.

Commissions & Inquiries

Andrew Anderson has experience in representing clients before Royal Commission hearings, as well as in secret investigations before the Crime and Corruption Commission and Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission. He also has experience in assisting clients dealing with regulatory agencies issues relating to workplace investigations.

Royal Commissions

Andrew Anderson has represented multiple clients before Commissions of Inquiry, including the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse. During the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, Andrew supported and represented multiple survivors of child sexual abuse in detailing their experiences in public hearings.

Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)

Andrew Anderson has experience with matters arising from the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC). ASIC has powers to compel the production of information and records, as well as to commence civil penalty proceedings and criminal proceedings. Andrew is independently recommended as one of the leading ‘white-collar’ and corporate criminal defence lawyers in Australia, which reflects his reputation as a highly skilled lawyer and litigator.

Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC)

The Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) is a highly secretive national criminal intelligence agency that works with law enforcement bodies across Australia. ACIC exists to detect and disrupt highly sophisticated, complex or serious crimes, including serious financial crime, in Australia. Andrew has experience in assisting individuals in matters relating to the work of ACIC.

Crime and Corruption Commission (CCC)

The Crime and Corruption Commission (CCC) in Queensland undertakes intelligence operations and investigations into serious criminal activity. It has the power to compel individuals to produce information and records, as well as to provide evidence to it. Andrew Anderson has significant experience in representing clients who are required to deal with the CCC.

Coronial Inquests: Coroners Court

A coronial inquest is a hearing, generally held in public, which has the object of finding the cause of death, or suspected death, of a person. Determinations may be needed about the identity of the deceased person, as well as how, when and where they died. In particular, evidence is often obtained to allow for findings to be made about the cause of death and surrounding circumstances. Andrew Anderson has experience in appearing in coronial inquests and advocating on behalf of interested parties, such as family members of the deceased person.

Read about some of his high-profile cases

Andrew Anderson has successfully handled numerous high-profile, complex and sensitive cases. His work is normally conducted discreetly, so as to maximise the privacy of his clients. There are some cases, however, which do make it onto the public record and attract high public interest.

Below is a small but diverse set of some of the notable cases handled by Andrew Anderson:

The Wrongful Conviction of Steven Fennell

Overturning a wrongful conviction for murder is difficult. Even if a conviction is overturned on appeal, often a retrial is ordered. In a case almost without precedent, the High Court of Australia acquitted Steven Fennell on the same day it heard his appeal.

Andrew Anderson’s part in overturning a wrongful conviction for murder started with a letter from Steven Fennell. Having secured funding for a special leave application to the High Court of Australia, Steven Fennell wanted the best criminal law team he could find. So, he turned to Andrew Anderson. By the time the case arrived on Andrew’s desk, Steven Fennell had already been convicted by a jury and his appeal had been dismissed by the Queensland Court of Appeal. The odds were stacked against him. Realistically, the High Court was the final opportunity to overturn the conviction on appeal.

To challenge the conviction before the High Court, Andrew Anderson worked with two barristers, Saul Holt QC and Kate Gover. Together, they secured Steven Fennell special leave to appeal on 22 March 2019 on the ground his conviction was unreasonable and not supported by the evidence.

The full appeal was heard on 11 September 2019 and that day the High Court of Australia gave the following orders:

  1. Appeal allowed.
  2. Set aside the order made by the Court of Appeal of the Supreme Court of Queensland on 21 July 2017 and in its place order that:
    1. the appeal be allowed;
    2. the appellant’s conviction for murder be quashed; and
    3. a verdict of acquittal be entered.

That evening, Steven Fennell was released from prison into the arms of his family – a free man. The reasons of the High Court show that the Queensland Court of Appeal, in dismissing the appeal of Steven Fennell, was wrong in multiple ways:

The Court of Appeal (Gotterson JA, with whom Philippides JA and Byrne SJA agreed) properly engaged in a consideration of the case as a whole when assessing Mr Fennell’s submission that the jury verdict was unreasonable or cannot be supported having regard to the evidence. However, and with genuine respect for an experienced judge, the reasoning of Gotterson JA involved errors in four areas which infected his conclusion. It is likely that a different process of reasoning in relation to any one of these areas would have led to a different conclusion.

The decision of the High Court shows that lawyers, judges or juries can get it wrong. Appeals always matter because they can provide the last chance to correct an injustice.


See Also:

Not Guilty: Supreme Court Trial

In March 2020, Elisabeth Coman was found not guilty of causing the death of her abusive partner. Since her acquittal, Ms Coman has spoken publicly about the tragic and unexpected effects of being the subject of domestic violence. (Courier Mail, 1 May 2020: Woman acquitted of killing abusive partner tells of horrific ordeal)

The domestic violence Ms Coman was subject to explained why acted as she did, and why she was not guilty of any charge. The not guilty verdicts came as a result of the prosecution failing to prove multiple elements of its case, including that Ms Coman had caused the death of her partner. There was no allegation that Ms Coman intended to kill or seriously injure her partner. The question was whether the death of her partner was a tragic accident, or an event that constituted a crime. So clear was Ms Coman’s answer to the charges against her, not all the defences available to her fell to be decided. In the reasons given for the verdicts of not guilty, it was said:

That is principally because the Crown did not dispute that Ms Coman and Mr Crandley had an argument which preceded her decision to leave the house or submit that such a response was unwarranted. It is also because most of that testimony would only fall to be considered in the context of the Code defences that were raised on the evidence but, for reasons I will come to, the Crown failed to make out the fundamental elements of either of the offences charged on the indictment and, accordingly, there was no need to move beyond those elements to a consideration of any of the defences.

All criminal trials involve complexities and challenges. It was Albert Einstein who said, “Out of complexity, find simplicity”. There is real strength to a defence that can be simply explained. The outcome from this trial shows that by ensuring the simple facts of the case are properly explored in the evidence, multiple flaws in the prosecution case can emerge.


See Also:

In 2013, Andrew Anderson was briefed to defend GVM (a pseudonym), who was accused of a sexual offence against his young daughter. It was alleged the offence occurred while the child’s mother was in the same room. GVM contested the charge and maintained his innocence.

Andrew Anderson brought an application to have the video-taped evidence of the child ruled inadmissible, on the basis it had been unfairly obtained by police.  The police officer had asked the child 12 times what had happened to her but at no point was any disclosure made consistent with the police case. In the course of that questioning by the police officer, the child even denied being touched by her father. It was not until the 13th attempt by the police officer and only in response to a leading question that a disclosure was made that fitted the police case. As Judge Kingham ruled in R v GVM (No 1) [2013] QDC 100:

The line of questioning was objectionable and rendered the answer given then inadmissible for the following reasons; firstly, repeating the same question as often as it was is liable to indicate to the child that the answer she was giving was not the answer the officer was looking for.

The judge noted that the repeated questioning was unwarranted and could not be justified, particularly having regard to the fact the child did not appear withdrawn or reluctant to provide any answers.

Following the evidence being excluded, the prosecution brought an application to reopen the ruling by Judge Kingham: (R v GVM (No 2) [2013] QDC 70). Between the first ruling and the second, Andrew Anderson obtained previously undisclosed evidence, which revealed important inconsistencies. In amongst other orders made, it was concluded that the original decision had been “fortified by the material non-disclosure by the prosecution”.

Senior Counsel for the Crown brought a further application to approve the prosecution refreshing the memory from recorded evidence that had been excluded (R v GVM (No 3) [2013] QDC 109). Andrew Anderson successfully opposed the prosecution application. As part of the reasons for judgment, it was stated by Judge Kingham:

Although, to date, I have not made any assessment of the child’s reliability as a witness, refreshing her memory out of court by reference to the excluded material could be expected to invoke a further application to exclude her evidence as having been tainted.

For anybody facing a serious criminal charge, particularly one that is prejudicial by its very nature, it is important that defence lawyers scrutinise the evidence to ensure it is not unfairly prejudicial. In order to achieve a fair trial, sometimes it is necessary to apply for the exclusion of evidence (even key prosecution evidence) ahead of a trial. The three GVM rulings are an example of Andrew Anderson’s capacity to identify unfairly obtained evidence and have it ruled inadmissible.

Royal Commission: Witness DK

In the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, Andrew Anderson represented Witness DK – a survivor of child sexual abuse – in the high-profile public hearings for Case Study 4: The Towards Healing Process. The scope and purpose of the case study was as follows:

  1. The principles and procedures of Towards Healing adopted by the Catholic Church and their application in responding to:
    1. Victims of child sexual abuse; and
    2. Allegations of child sexual abuse against personnel of the Catholic Church.
  2. The experience of people who have engaged in the Towards Healing process.
  3. Any other related matters.

Witness DK was among the first survivors to come forward and outline his experience before the Royal Commission. Recognising the importance that the truth come out, Andrew Anderson identified a crucial witness, a respected barrister, who had not been asked to provide a statement. Ultimately that witness would become Witness DL, whose testimony supported Witness DK. Representatives of the Catholic Church challenged Witness DK on his recollection on key issues. On key issues, Witness DL supported the evidence of Witness DK. In its findings, the Royal Commission found Witness DK to be a credible witness who, supported by Witness DL, exposed shortcomings in the institutional response he was afforded.

Part of the skill of any lawyer is to anticipate the likely issues and, where possible, fortify the ground on which your client must make their stand. Identifying the need for Witness DL to give evidence meant the Royal Commission was more easily able to rely on Witness DK. While a witness need not be corroborated to be believed, if corroboration exists, it may be crucial to bring it forward.

Andrew Anderson went on to represent multiple survivors in a number of case studies before the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse, including in Brisbane, Sydney and Perth.

Contact Andrew Anderson

This firm offers a free consultation to enable us to understand your issues and to determine if we are in a real position to provide the standard of advice and representation you are entitled to expect.

If you seek legal services that will be tailored to your needs, call Andrew Anderson. Alternatively, you can complete our form and Andrew Anderson will endeavour to contact you.