JN v State of NSW – Client receives settlement sum after unlawful arrest

Keywords: Action against police, assault; battery by police officer, false imprisonment, unlawful arrest.


JN, the Plaintiff, attended Harvey Norman in Sydney CBD to collect an item he had purchased online. JN did not have a driver’s licence but did produce his Medicare card and proof of purchase for the Harvey Norman employee. A disagreement ensued and store security were called.

While exiting the store, two police officers accosted him. The police refused to listen to his explanations of his dispute. The police performed a personal search on the Plaintiff in full view of members of the public and pushed him backwards, causing pain to the Plaintiff. The officers proceeded to handcuff JN and pushed him into a caged police vehicle. Approximately 40 minutes later, JN was released from the police vehicle without charge and issued with an infringement notice for failing to comply with an official move on direction.

The plaintiff suffered distress, embarrassment and humiliation, along with a continued apprehension of imminent physical contact with his body by the officers, and loss of liberty.


O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors successfully acted for JN in an action against the police for assault, battery and false imprisonment. The two officers were found to have acted in contumelious disregard of the plaintiff’s rights by the District Court of NSW. The plaintiff received a large settlement for his loss and damages.

If you think that you have been unlawfully arrested or falsely imprisoned contact us for a free initial consultation. We are experts in this area of law and will be able to assist you in getting the best outcome for your case. Call us on (02) 9261 4281 or email 


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