About Us

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 all criminal and traffic law matters. When experience and dedication is combined with our specialised knowledge, 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.


We offer Victoria’s only reliable 24 hours legal service. Call (03) 9870 1959

Legal service available in Chinese (Mandarin).

Our Team

Chen Yang

Principal Solicitor

Chen Yang has been the Principal Partner and Solicitor Advocate of Paul Vale Criminal Law since 2012. Apart from appearing daily in Magistrates, County and Supreme Courts, Chen is also one of the only experienced criminal lawyers in Melbourne who speaks fluent Chinese (Mandarin).

Chen specialises in all areas of Criminal and Traffic law matters including: Driving and Licence offences, Family Violence matters, Intervention Order applications, 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.

Michael Cunningham

Senior Solicitor

Michael Cunningham was admitted to practice as a solicitor in 2007 and has worked extensively in all aspects of Criminal Law since then. He continues to appear regularly in the Magistrates’, County and Supreme Courts where he uses his advocacy skills to achieve outstanding results for his clients.

Michael has personally appeared and successfully advocated for his clients in a wide variety of hearings, including contested summary criminal charges, indictable criminal charges, contested Intervention Order applications, summary jurisdiction applications, appeals against sentence, contested bail applications, and contested committal hearings.

Michael has also had considerable experience in high profile and complex criminal matters, including murder trials, and applications for leave/special leave to appeal at both the Court of Appeal and High Court levels.

His drive to fearlessly advance his clients’ best interests while remaining open, approachable and compassionate allows Michael to build and maintain strong rapport with his clients and help guide them through the often difficult and stressful legal process.

Josh Hickey

Josh Hickey

Managing Solicitor

Josh originally joined Paul Vale Criminal Law in 2012 as a law clerk whilst completing his law degree and practical legal training. In 2014 Josh was admitted to practice as a solicitor and remained at the firm, developing a busy summary and indictable crime practice.

Prior to his return to Paul Vale Criminal Law, Josh worked at Victoria Legal Aid for five years. Whilst predominantly undertaking criminal and intervention order matters, he also gained experience in Family Law, Child Protection and general Civil Law matters. Most recently he held the roles of Senior Lawyer and Deputy Managing Lawyer at the Broadmeadows office, where he appeared in court daily.

In 2022 Josh was certified by the Law Institute of Victoria as an Accredited Specialist in Criminal Law.

Josh appears regularly in the Magistrates Court and County Court and has significant experience ranging from driving matters to serious sexual offences. Josh will appear in complex plea hearings, contested bail applications and County Court appeals. Josh will apply a rigorous approach to all facets of your case ensuring you receive high quality legal representation and the best possible outcome.

Paul Vale


Paul Vale has been a leading Criminal Law solicitor in Melbourne for more than 40 years. He was an Accredited Criminal Specialist (one of only 125 in Victoria).

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.