About us

Why you should choose our team of legal experts

Meet the team

Paul Vale Criminal Law is a leading specialist criminal law firm in Victoria. With over 40 years of experience, our lawyers are legal experts in Melbourne criminal law matters. When experience and dedication is combined with our knowledge in criminal law, we are in the best position to attain successful results for our clients.

Our team of lawyers are multilingual.

Our dedicated solicitors are knowledgeable and experienced.

Our vast experience enables us to advise you on the best course of action to be taken in your matter.

Our commitment to you ensures that your voice is heard.

A significant number of criminal solicitors and barristers currently practising in Victoria received their legal training at Paul Vale Criminal Law.

Paul Vale Criminal Law is a leading specialist criminal law firm in Melbourne. With over 40 years of experience, our lawyers are legal experts in Melbourne criminal law matters. When experience and dedication are combined with our knowledge of criminal law, we are in the best position to attain successful results for our clients.

Our team of lawyers are multilingual.

Our dedicated solicitors are
knowledgeable and experienced.

Our vast experience enables us to
advise you on the best course of action
to be taken in your matter.

Our commitment to you ensures that
your voice is heard.

A significant number of criminal
solicitors and barristers currently
practising in Victoria received their
legal training at Paul Vale Criminal Law.

Our team

Chen Yang

Principal Solicitor

Chen Yang is the Principal Partner and Solicitor Advocate of Paul Vale Criminal Law. Apart from appearing daily in Magistrates, County and Supreme Courts, Chen is also one of the only experienced criminal lawyers in Victoria who is fluent in Chinese (Mandarin).

Chen specialises in all areas of Criminal and Traffic Law matters including: Drink Driving defences, Licence restoration, Assault (family violence), Drug Offences (Possession, Trafficking, Cultivation and Importation), Property offences, Sex offences, Murder/Manslaughter. Chen Yang also possesses significant experience in Criminal Appellate matters in the County, Supreme and High Court.

By combining his extensive legal knowledge, court experience and compassion, Chen continues to obtain true justice for his clients in the form of remarkable results.

Nelson Brown

Senior Solicitor

Nelson Brown is a Law Institute of Victoria accredited Criminal Law Specialist and Senior Solicitor at Paul Vale Criminal Law. He is experienced solicitor advocate who has practised almost exclusively in the area of criminal defence law for over five years since he was admitted to the Supreme Court of South Australia in September 2010. Nelson has practised across three states in South Australia, Western Australia and currently Victoria.

Nelson has vast experience which he brings from his previous work at Legal Aid in SA, WA and Victoria Legal Aid before coming to Paul Vale Criminal Law in April 2016. He specialises in all areas of criminal and traffic law, including bail applications, complex plea hearings and contested hearings. He also has experience in intervention order matters.

He is a passionate and professional advocate on behalf of his clients and always strives for the best outcomes. He appears regularly for his clients in complex matters in the Magistrates’, County and Supreme Courts across Victoria.

Gemma Calgaro

Solicitor

Gemma is a qualified, experienced and dedicated solicitor advocate, having gained progressively responsible legal experience over a number of years. She completed a Bachelor of Law/Arts at The University of Melbourne followed by a graduate diploma of Legal Practice at Leo Cussen Centre for Law.

After a brief period volunteering at the North Australian Aboriginal Family Violence Legal Service, Gemma joined the team at Paul Vale. She now practices almost exclusively in the area of criminal defence law. She appears regularly as an advocate in a variety of matters in both Magistrates’ and County Court jurisdictions and as an instructing solicitor in the County and Supreme Courts.

Gemma is confident and committed to providing a voice for all who cross paths with our justice system. She offers her skills and experience in legal advice and representation and applies them in the pursuit of defending and protecting the rights of an accused. Gemma is considerate and sensitive to her client’s wishes, addressing their particular needs on a case by case basis and striving for the best possible outcome.

Caroline Salter

Solicitor

Caroline was admitted to practice in December 2016 after graduating with a Bachelor of Laws and Bachelor of Arts (History & Legal Studies Majors) from La Trobe University. Caroline commenced her career at Paul Vale Criminal Law in May 2016 as a Legal Trainee after completing her Practical Legal Traineeship at Leo Cussen Centre for Law.

Caroline is passionate, focused and quick thinking in striving to achieve fair and just results for her clients. She takes pride in maintaining attention to detail in her preparation and diligence in all court appearances and always provides high-level legal assistance and client service to ensure each client understands the court process, their charges and their available options.

Since joining Paul Vale Criminal Law, Caroline has worked on many highly complex indictable matters and has developed an excellent rapport and network within the industry.

Caroline is committed to pursuing and expanding her skills in criminal law as a Solicitor Advocate and is dedicated to applying honest and thorough advice to each individual client. Caroline confidently appears as a Solicitor Advocate in the Magistrates Court and at suburban courts and as an instructing solicitor in County and Supreme Court matters

Paul Vale

Consultant

Paul Vale has been a leading Criminal Law solicitor in Melbourne for more than 35 years. He is an Accredited Criminal Specialist (one of only 125 in Victoria) and is also on the Victorian Legal Aid Indictable Panel.

Paul possesses vast experience and expertise in all areas of Criminal and Traffic law and regularly conducts Appeals in the Court of Appeals and High Court of Australia. Paul’s wealth of knowledge in case law, legislation and court craft will ensure that meticulous service and advice is provided so that you have the highest probability of obtaining the best result.