According to (McBride, 2010) the ethical issue that confronts lawyers when defending a guilty client is the fact that it is a general stigma that a person guilty of a crime is required to be punished to the equivalent of the crime.
However, Asimow (2006) states that without correct solicitor representation, the defendant’s version of events will not be made clear to the court, this situation in itself will lead to the sentencing and punishment of the defendant solely based on the accusations of the prosecution.
What must be understood is that in all legal proceedings, situations will exist where a crime is a crime, for example, committing fraud in any circumstance will be seen and sentenced as fraud, however, the events leading up to, and during the offense, should be, and are considered in the court of law, with this process being referred to as, ‘case law’.
It should be noted, that during the proceedings of a case, a judge only knows the facts given by the representatives of the prosecution and defence, because of this fact, this is the main point of belief in why we advocate the representation of guilty client. As can be seen by these factors, the ethical dilemma concerned by a lawyer not representing a client they know are guilty is that the deliberation between both views of opinion will eventually be the reasoning behind the judges final decision, the results of which will more than likely have a lasting effect on the remainder of the defendants life, so therefore this decision must be made with all the facts and the utmost discretion.
It must also be seen, as shown in D’Amato, 2010, that in our court of law, and how they operate, it is determined that a person is innocent until proven guilty, this also states that only two groups can make the final decision on the guilt of a certain person, this verdict falls down to the decision of the judge, or the jury presiding over the case, under no circumstances is a lawyer able to make that decision, regardless of client confession.
It should also be made aware that during the legal proceedings, the crime has already been committed, and therefore in reality the only person who still has the possibility to still be at risk is the client (D’Amato, 2010). As a legal representative of this person, their job is to ensure as much protection as possible for their client, doing this by ensuring the judge is aware of the facts of all parties involved in the matter to ensure a fair and unbiased trail.