KLEIN takes on the defence in criminal cases. Also as a court-appointed counsel. A court-appointed legal counsel is not a lower type or quality of defence. On the contrary: It really challenges the lawyer. A court-appointed counsel is a “necessary counsel for the defence” according to the German code of criminal procedure (StPO). In the cases stated in Section 140 StPO, the defendant must be given a lawyer as a counsel for the defence. Criminal proceedings cannot be carried out without a counsel for the defence, which is why the defence of a defendant is “necessary”. If the defendant is appointed a “necessary counsel for the defence”, this defence lawyer is called a “court-appointed counsel”. A court-appointed counsel is not a lawyer whose costs are borne by the state, contrary to a common misconception. He only fixes his fees with the state treasury. The defendant must initially pay these in advance. However, costs for a court-appointed counsel are legal costs. In the event of sentencing, the defendant will then be charged these costs. Only in the event of aquittal does the state treasury bear the costs of the proceedings.
The primary objective of every effective defence is avoiding trials and the publicity that surrounds them. Sometimes a trial before a court cannot be avoided. The question of guilt is then clarified in the main trail before the court.KLEIN defends clients in criminal and civil proceedings and in proceedings in front of work and disciplinary committees. He always bears in mind the often considerable consequences of a criminal proceeding and averts claims for damages and liability. The meticulous structure of all record content is also a fundamental requirement for effective litigation like a psychologically and strategically optimised line of reasoning.
Nobody knows that they are being investigated. Investigations take place in secret. The public prosecutor’s office and the police collect “evidence”. This evidence is then the starting point for the forecast as to whether the person concerned will later be subjected to a public trial in court. The person concerned frequently learns that he is being investigated by chance, often from colleagues, neighbours or relatives, who have been questioned by police as witnesses. An extremely difficult situation when everyone around you knows more than you do. All of a sudden, this person is confronted with the entire power of the state: Searches, confiscations, assets being taken into custody or even arrest are extreme situations and frequently the trigger of a life crisis. As an experienced counsel for the defence, KLEIN supports and defends affected people in this difficult phase. The fight for justice for the defendant begins with the preliminary investigation and not only after indictment. Proactive action, constant contact with the public prosecutor’s office and the early introduction of the client’s interests into the investigation are the most important tasks in defence.KLEIN leaves traces in the investigation file and at the same time sets the course for the outcome of the entire investigation.
Detention awaiting trial is the unlawful detention of an innocent person. The detention order may only be given as a last resort. With each day of detention, the risk of the loss of financial livelihood increases, as do adverse effects on private relationships. KLEIN faces this threat with a resolute and expert defence.
Which version of the truth will influence the verdict is decided in the court room. The public prosecutor’s office hypothesis is presented to the judge with the evidence obtained during the preliminary investigation. Or the defence’s alternative hypothesis, which casts doubt on any certainties, must lodge a stone in the wheels of the justice system. The fight for justice for the defendant is all the more intensive in the trial. As counsel for the defence, KLEIN not only has to confront fixed perceptions, he also has to counter the human tendency to accept what they have read in the record as true. KLEIN counters the eternally active state power with an iron fist and presents theories that are suitable for creating doubt about the prosecution hypothesis. In dubio pro reo. The accused enjoys the benefit of the doubt. If the court even slightly doubts the accuracy of the prosecution hypothesis, it must acquit the accused. The art of conviction – the art of questioning hypotheses and casting doubt must always be reinvented. In each and every case. Inspiration seems to come from the moment. And the basis of this art is tenacious hard work, experience and excellent knowledge of the rules of procedure. Competence, spontaneity and bite are good ammunition for both defence and psychological intuition and the ability to make complex procedural tactics comprehensible to clients.
Appeal and new trial
The revocation of a miscarriage of justice is the ultimate defence counsel trick, whether by way of appeal or a new trial. The appeal is then the last proper means of legal redress for the defendant. Numerous appeals are dismissed because the court of appeal does not listen to any more witnesses, does not question expert witnesses and usually does not carry out a trial. The appeal court is only concerned with legal issues, which are decided by the professional judge, because there are no lay judges at the court of appeal. In his appeal statement, KLEIN must present a challenge that shows the previous prosecution was inaccurate in specific areas. KLEIN must emphasise the appropriate main points and categorise these into procedural contexts. This is often a Sisyphean task that requires lots of experience and very good knowledge of the development of supreme court jurisdiction. If the appeal fails, the verdict is final. Nevertheless, the verdict may be wrong. Innocent people are targeted again and again by criminal prosecution authorities. Under certain circumstances, a trial can be reopened. Successful retrials are even rarer than successful appeals. The demands on the counsel for the defence are even higher. Defence is a fight for justice for the defendant by legal means. This is reflected in this complex process. The fate of the affected person hangs by a thread. KLEIN knows how to tie this thread to a rescue rope.
Human rights and constitutional complaints
The verdict is given at the end of the proceedings. If the accused is given a sentence, his world falls apart and makes him doubt the constitutional state. However, the fight for justice for the client is not yet over. Nowhere else in criminal proceedings does the state intervene more deeply in fundamental rights through coercive measures and imprisonment. Criminal convictions in particular can seriously infringe the fundamental rights or human rights of the person concerned. Sometimes only a constitutional complaint to the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe or a human rights complaint to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg helps. In the European Convention on Human Rights, minimum democratic and legal standards are formulated, compliance with which is observed by the Court of Human Rights. Every European citizen who, by a judgement of a court, has had his guaranteed rights violated, may contest the violation of the rules of the convention with a human rights complaint. Even German courts repeatedly violate the basic fundamental procedural rights of Article 6 of the European Convention on Human Rights in criminal proceedings. The court has already noted many such violations, even by German courts, and has also put an end to seemingly constitutional practices.
Imagine an interrogation situation as shown on TV: The witness is taken to police headquarters. He wants to exonerate himself but is caught up in contradictions and is helplessly exposed to the suggestive questions of the police inspector. Behind the mirrored glass wall, against which the investigator is leaning, a criminal psychologist observes every movement of the "witness" who, without realising it, is becoming a suspect, because he was already suspected beforehand without knowing it. The line from being the witness to becoming the accused is fluid and barely recognisable to those affected. Witnesses do not know what the interrogator knows. Interrogators make full use of this knowledge advantage. These are known as leading questions. The dilemma: Once recorded, a witness statement can hardly ever be reversed. It will later affect the person concerned if he becomes entangled in contradictions and suddenly becomes the accused. “I am not saying anything else” does not help if a witness has already said too much. KLEIN advises clients who will be questioned as witnesses. He personally supports them during questioning and immediately intervenes if the witness could incriminate himself through his statements.
Like the defendant, the victim of a crime also has the right to professional legal representation and support. KLEIN also works for injured parties/victims as witness assistance or joint plaintiff. KLEIN optimally prepares injured parties/victims for proceedings, accompanies them in confrontations with investigating authorities and ensures maximum protection for the victim/witness during questioning in the criminal trial. Professional victim representation goes far beyond representing injured parties/victims in criminal proceedings against the perpetrator: At the same time, claims for damages, claims according to insurance law, social legislation and the German Victims Compensation Act have to be checked and enforced. These claims depend indirectly on the perpetrator’s sentence. Because of his dual qualification as a criminal and civil lawyer, KLEIN is able to offer the victim of a crime optimal legal support.