There are many people in Australia who believe that they are 'Freemen' or 'Sovereign Citizens' who have the unfettered right to disregard Statute Law, such as driving while unlicensed and in unregistered vehicles. They wrongly believe that Common Law supersedes Statute Law. Those beliefs have led them to disaster in courts across Australia, as they have used such mistaken notions as defences in traffic and other legal matters and it has cost them dearly. The reason is that these people were misled by various anti-fines and community law organisations and the wrong information on their websites.
I am not a lawyer, but I have some legal experience and most of all, I can read and interpret English, which seems to be problematical for some of these community law websites. A typical example of this is their interpretation of a section of the Imperial Acts Application Act that is in force in all states of Australia. Section 12 states:
This section of the Act has been often used to try and have traffic fines cancelled, because defendants claimed that they were fined prior to having their day in court and receiving due process of law. But the reason that these defendants invariably failed was because they completely misinterpreted that Section and did not understand the reason why it was included in the Act.
When William III was King of England, he had a nasty habit of stitching up his enemies on fabricated charges, fining them and then distributing those fines to his supporters. Thus the British parliament forced Section 12 into the Imperial Acts Application Act to make it illegal for King William to do this. So the section of the Act states that "all grants and promises of fines..." - the operative words being 'grants and promises' - not the fines themselves.
This did not mean that the fines were actually illegal, but the clause stopped the King from handing the proceeds of those fines to his cronies. However in modern-day Australia, the Sovereign Citizen types misconstrue this to mean that fining somebody prior to conviction is illegal - and quite rightly, that's the way it should be. Now if that clause stated: "That all fines and forfeitures of particular persons before conviction, are illegal and void", then nobody could be penalised until after they were convicted of an offence by due process of law. BUT - that is NOT what the Act states. As long as that phrase 'grants and promises' remains, that Section of the Act is useless in trying to beat traffic infringements and any other penalties.
A formal letter from the Victorian Attorney-General states the following:
Many of these 'Sovereign Citizens' and 'Freemen' types claim that the Australia Acts are illegal and that laws passed in Australia don't have the Queen's assent, thus rendering them illegal. These Acts ceded all powers that the British Government had over Australia, thus the Australian Parliament is the highest law in the nation. There are no more British Privy Council appeals or anything to do with Britain. Even the Queen's assent is automatically granted by her Australian representative, the Governor-General.
Apart from being a member of the British Commonwealth, Australia is not subject to any British law, such as the abolished appeals to the Privy Council. The monarch is a figurehead and has no tangible power. So the reality for Australians is that Common Law applies only when Commonwealth and State Statute Laws are absent. The legal principle is that all things are legal unless there are laws against them. This is why the people elect parliamentarians to represent them and their interests and these politicians are charged with making laws that are legally binding.
What this means is that if a parliament has passed a law, it is a Statute that is legally binding on the people. For example, if a parliament has passed a law that requires motor vehicles to be registered or that people need driver's licences in order to legally drive a vehicle, then those laws are binding. 'Sovereign Citizens' and 'Freemen' can argue about this until they are blue in the face, but if they go to court and try to have traffic offences thrown out on the grounds that they don't need vehicle registration or driver's licences, they invariably are convicted, because they have completely misinterpreted how the law works.
The worst thing that people do is to delude themselves that they are right, when information on which they rely is wrong. If they took a knife to a gunfight, they would soon find out how bad an idea that was. It's the same with court matters. I have found that it is pointless taking a matter to court unless I know that there was no way that I could lose. Thus I have won every single legal matter in which I have been involved, either as a complainant or a defendant. To do otherwise is rather stupid.
So if you have an issue where you think that you should go to court to deal with it, just make sure that your grounds are valid. Of course it is absolutely vital to have hard admissible evidence that can be used to prove your case. Do your homework to ensure that your arguments are not only valid and logical, but they are substantiated by the law. Don't make the mistake of believing that Common Law supersedes Statute Law, because there is a very large trail of the legal carasses of fools who lost their cases by believing that fiction.
I can't even begin to count how many people have gone to court and waved the Imperial Acts Application Act Section 12 at a magistrate or judge who completely dismissed it as a valid defence. Make sure that whatever you use in your court dealings is actually valid and not the fantasising of so-called legal experts on many of these community law websites. They won't pay your penalties and costs when you lose because you took their wrong advice.
Going to court is not for the faint-hearted and most people don't even understand the procedures or the constraints under which judges and magistrates operate. These judicial officers only rule on laws, not invent laws or amend existing statutes. They only have the power to adjudicate on the laws that are in force. So if you do decide to take a matter to court, whether it is a defence against a traffic penalty or some other issue, make 100% certain that your case is literally unbeatable under existing law, not what you imagine it should be. If you don't take all measures to ensure victory, you will almost certainly suffer defeat.