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Research - Australian Police Caution

edited November 2013 in Writing
I've googled and discovered the police must tell you that what you say may be used in evidence, but can't find a standard caution. Is there a particular phrases (or phrases) you'd expect a policeman to say when arresting someone? I just need the first sentence or so, to show this is a formal arrest.


  • edited November 2013
    The current caution used in New South Wales is:
    You are not obliged to say or do anything unless you wish to do so, but whatever you say or do may be used in evidence. Do you understand?
    The current caution used in Queensland is:
    Before I ask you any questions I must tell you that you have the right to remain silent.
    This means you do not have to say anything, answer any question or make any statement unless you wish to do so. However, if you do say something or make a statement, it may later be used as evidence. Do you understand?

    This is just from wiki... pinch of salt, but it must be in the ballpark!

    EDIT: slaps own wrist for double cliche in a single half-formed sentence
  • edited November 2013
    I've definitely heard the NSW version on Australian cop shows, most of which come out of Sydney or
    Melbourne. Can't say I've heard the Queensland version though.
  • Thanks, Webbo. I found lots of references to cautions, but not the words themselves. Had been looking for a single standard one though, which might be why I was having trouble.

    I've not specified where in Oz this happens, so will go for the NSW version as it's nice and simple.

    Thanks, Nena. I wanted something readers were likely to recognise, so the version used on TV should be fine.
  • In most tv Police dramas I've seen, they simply say something like, "You're nicked!"
  • www.qld.gov.au/law/crime-and-police/being-arrested-and-police-custody/being-arrested/

    'Do police have to ‘read me my rights’?

    In Queensland, police don’t have to caution you about your right to silence unless they want to question you as a suspect in a serious offence.

    Usually, they must tell you that you are under arrest and why. Always ask if it is not clear and write the details down as soon as possible.
    Do I have the right to remain silent?

    In general, you have the right to remain silent. However, there are some questions that the police can ask and you must answer.'

    In NSW the rules have been changed recently:

    Being Australia, you would need to be sure that you have the right wording for the State concerned.
  • Thanks, Mrs Bear.

    I'm having him state the person is arrested and what the crime is before giving the caution.
  • I have a few cop mates, PM, so will ask them for the exact wording (straight from the piggies' mouths) should you so desire it, but it seems Monsieur Webbo has pretty much nailed it anyway. Let me know if you want me to follow up.
  • Thanks, Island Girl but I think I have it now. Seems there isn't a single standard caution for the whole country. I was worried there was and if I used a slightly different wording it wouldn't be convincing, but that's not going to be a problem.
  • I know you said it didn't matter but one of my friends got back to me anyway, with the following...

    I must inform you that you do not have to say or do anything, but anything you say or do may be given in evidence.
    Do you understand that?
    I must also inform you of the following rights:
    You may communicate with a friend or a relative to inform that person of your whereabouts.
    You may communicate with or attempt to communicate with a legal practitioner.
  • Thanks, Island Girl.
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