PROFILE

Full Name: Thomas Gyorffy QC
Email: tgyorffy@vicbar.com.au
Phone:+61 3 9225 6118
Mobile:0408 874 735
Chambers: Owen Dixon Chambers East
Room: 0212
Date of Admission: 2 Nov 1977
Called to the Bar: 10 Apr 1979
Appointed Silk: 22 Nov 2011
Qualifications: LLB (Melbourne); LLM (Monash)

Profile

With over 30 years of experience as a barrister Tom Gyorffy QC appears in criminal and civil trials and has an extensive practice in the appellate jurisdictions of the High Court and Court of Appeal. He is known for his careful analysis of cases, thinking outside the square and a very focused presentation of cases in court.

Tom graduated in law from Melbourne University in March 1977 and was admitted to practice in Victoria in November 1977 when he commenced as a solicitor in the suburbs.

In April 1979 Tom signed the Bar Roll and read with Kevin Mahony. He had a general practice at the Bar working in civil and criminal law until mid-1984 when he took leave of absence to take up the position of Assistant Director of the Policy and Research Unit of the Law Department.

As the Assistant Director Tom gave policy advice to the then Attorney General and also did extensive work on the Attorney’s legislative program. Some of the major legislation he worked on included the Supreme Court Act, Coroner’s Act, Mental Health Act and Guardianship Act.

Tom was the Attorney General’s representative on The Consultative Committee on Police Powers chaired by John Coldrey QC. In that capacity he helped to draft the reports of the Committee on “Custody and Investigation”, “Fingerprinting” and “Body Samples” which form the basis of the current police powers found in the Crimes Act. He was also Director of Research for the Sentencing Committee chaired by Sir John Starke QC. The Committee’s report was the basis of the current Sentencing Act.

In 1987 Tom returned to the Victorian Bar and resumed practice as a barrister. He worked in commercial law torts and crime. He was appointed a part time chair of the inaugural Mental Review Board and over the time of his appointment chaired many review panels.

August 1989 saw Tom appointed as a Prosecutor for the Queen after which he practiced almost exclusively in the criminal law. As a prosecutor he appeared in hundreds of trials including about 120 murder cases. He also worked extensively in Occupational Health and Safety and Confiscation cases which allowed him to continue to apply his experience in civil law.

Since 1990 Tom has had an extensive appellate practice appearing in the Court of Appeal and High Court. A search of his name in Aust Lii reveals just how extensive that practice is. The Victorian and Commonwealth law reports contain a huge number of cases he has appeared in. Many of them are important precedents including; Masciantonio (1995) which redefined the law of provocation in Victoria, Getachew (2012) which redefined the mental element of rape, and Baini (2012) which defined the test for appeal against conviction on indictable offences. Tom has also appeared in many Judicial Reviews in the Supreme Court.

In 1999 to 2000 Tom was principal counsel assisting the Coroner in the inquest into the Linton Wildfire. The inquest went over 118 days and resulted in an extensive report which substantially changed the culture of fire fighters in the CFA and DSE. It gave recommendations introducing a strong adherence to OH&S principles in firefighting.

In 2005 Tom was elected to Macedon Ranges Shire Council. During that time he developed an interest in planning laws having sat on many applications for planning permits.

Tom is a contributing author to Criminal Law Investigation and Procedure Victoria edited by Frecklton. He writes on Dishonesty Offences and Juries.

Tom was appointed silk in November 2011.


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Areas of Practice

Common Law/Personal Injury

  • Intentional Torts
  • Negligence

Commercial

  • Contractual Disputes
  • Insurance

Public/Administrative

  • Civil and Human Rights
  • Constitutional Law
  • Disciplinary Proceedings
  • Extradition
  • Judicial Review and administrative law
  • Proceeds of Crime

Criminal

  • Crimes against the person
  • Drugs
  • Environmental and Planning Offences
  • Extradition
  • Fraud
  • Mental Illness
  • Proceeds of Crime/Money Laundering
  • Property Offences
  • Sexual Assault
  • White Collar and Corporate Crime
  • Work Health and Safety

Appellate

  • Civil Appeals
  • Criminal Appeals

Inquests/Inquiries

  • Commissions and other inquiries
  • Coronial Inquests

Also Entitled to Practise in

  • Federal Court of Australia
  • High Court of Australia
  • New South Wales
  • Tasmania
From 17 Jul 2015, liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.


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