Criminal Defence Lawyers in Portugal

Criminal accusations are always upsetting for an individual, often considerably more so if you are arrested abroad. There may be language difficulties and few people are familiar with the procedures or their rights following arrest in a foreign country. 

Giambrone & Partners highly regarded English-speaking criminal defence team in our Porto office in Portugal can offer immediate assistance to a UK citizen facing criminal charges in Portugal. Our multi-lingual multi-jurisdictional lawyers have extensive experience in assisting individuals arrested in Portugal and can advise, not only in the aftermath of the arrest but we can further assist in protecting the person’s standing and reputation.

An individual taken into custody or summoned to be interviewed by the police has the basic right to:

  • To be notified of their rights on arrest, this information can be delivered in writing in a language you understand or orally.
  • They must be informed of the allegations or charges made against them prior to an interrogation.
  • They have the right to an interpreter, however, it should be noted that the level of language skills may vary. 
  • They have the right to a lawyer, the duty lawyer will be offered automatically. However, an individual can appoint their own lawyer and ask the police to make contact. It is important to ensure that you accept the services of a lawyer otherwise it may be concluded that you have waived your right to legal advice at this stage.

The processes and procedures leading from an arrest and interrogation are determined by the severity of the charges and the strength or weakness of the evidence produced.

The time scale for criminal proceedings can take up to two years depending on the nature of the specific case. An amendment to the Criminal Procedure Code 2016 provided for summary procedure for a range of less serious crimes.

Where a defendant does not live within Portuguese jurisdiction, summons and any other notices from the court requesting the individual to attend court will be served by post in a manner that requires acknowledgment of receipt.

Where necessary the Portuguese court may make a formal request to a foreign court for judicial assistance by means of letters rogatory, usually related to service of process or taking evidence.

Giambrone & Partners' Portuguese expert criminal defense lawyers will guide you and provide pragmatic legal advice and practical solutions to assist you.

For more information on managing a criminal matter please click here.