Meet the expert and brilliant team of Able Defence Lawyers

Annette Wood

Annette Wood is a highly respected and experienced trial advocate, she advocates for her clients both inside and outside the courtroom. She has built a reputation as a criminal defence lawyer experienced in handling a wide variety of matters in the local, district and supreme courts for individual and corporate clients.

Annette’s case portfolio is extensive, covering a wide range of criminal and civil matters. She has a background in the New South Wales Police and is a qualified Fraud Investigator. Annette is on the panels for the Law Enforcement Commission (LECC), and the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC).

Among her notable criminal cases, Annette is an expert in white collar and corporate crime. She is able to use her investigation experience to find assets in complex family law matters. Annette also regularly appears in the Family Court of Australia and the Federal Circuit Court.

She is admitted in the Supreme Court and the High Court of Australia.

Notable civil cases include a successful judgement at the NSW Civil and Administrative (NCAT) against the Commissioner for Fair Trading and Commission of Police.

Apart from successful verdicts and settlements, dismissals and favourable sentences, Annette counts among her proudest professional experiences having successfully defended a client who was facing two life sentences. There were overall 11 charges on the indictments and Annette and her legal team achieved not guilty outcomes and acquittal on all charges.

In addition to her law degree, Annette holds Post Graduate qualifications in Management and Law, Bachelor of Policing, Associate Diploma of Science, Diploma of Fraud Investigations.

Annette has taught at the NSW Police Academy and she has served as a volunteer at local high schools in their Mock Trial program, imparting her vast legal knowledge to the up and coming generation of future advocates.

She practices in both New South Wales and Victorian courts.


Ray Byrne
Senior Solicitor

“Every family is different and every situation is different. Family Law is not a one size fits all scenario and tailoring each agreement to suit the circumstances of your matter is the paramount consideration. Being a Family Law Solicitor is not just a job, it is a vocation and helping people find the common middle ground is the prime directive for all of us. Helping my clients through this extremely difficult time in their lives so they can move on with their lives is very satisfying.”

Ray has worked in both Blue and White collar industries prior to his legal career and is able to relate to his clients in a manner that few other lawyers can. Ray’s life experiences, down to earth approach, and common sense application means he is able to get to the heart of an issue and give an open and honest appraisal of his Client’s legal position. This, and Ray’s genuine desire to help his Client’s achieve the optimum outcome, ensures Ray Byrne is a highly sought after Solicitor.

He has a broad legal knowledge, and is experienced in all aspects of Family Law proceedings, regularly appears in Family and Federal Circuit Courts of Australia in Sydney and Parramatta. He is known to have travelled to some of the Circuit locations of the Court to great relief of his Clients.

He has experience in Court, and Mediations, Conciliations and Arbitrations, advocating his Client’s position in Parenting and Property matters in Interim and Final hearings and advise generally on the array of issues that can arise during the conduct of proceedings.

Ray has lived in the Outer Western Sydney most of his life and has spent large tracts of his life in rural New South Wales and takes great pride in his capacity to provide down to earth advice to members of his community.

Outside of work, Ray enjoys spending time with his ever-expanding family, reading, playing Rugby Union and following the Wallabies around the World at World Cups.

Rays qualifications include:  Admitted as a Solicitor of the High Court of Australia; Admitted as a Solicitor of the Supreme Court of New South Wales; Master of Applied Law (Family Law) – College of Law; Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice; Bachelor of Laws – University of Western Sydney.


John Amiradakis
Senior Solicitor

John Amiradakis commenced his legal career in 2004 and was admitted as an Attorney in the High Court of South Africa in 2006. John is also admitted as a Solicitor in Australia. His dual admission and years of experience as a legal professional enables him to provide client’s with sound legal advice and achieve outstanding results for them.

John has significant experience in both litigation and commerce and this has allowed him to use his skills in various areas of the law, including criminal and traffic law, commercial and retail leases, general litigation, family law and employment related issues such as unfair dismissals.

John is passionate about all things legal. He relates to people from a wide variety of backgrounds and strives to provide practical and cost effective legal advice and achieve outstanding results for his clients.


Cathy Ohanian
Senior Solicitor

Cathy Ohanian commenced her career in the legal profession in 2012 when she commenced work as a paralegal for a Sydney law firm while studying law at the University of Western Sydney. Cathy graduated from the University of Western Sydney in 2013 with a double degree: Bachelor of Laws/ Bachelor of Business and Commerce (Human Resource Management) and obtained her Graduate Diploma in Legal Practice though the Australian National University. She was admitted as a solicitor in the New South Wales Supreme Court in July 2014.

Cathy assists clients in many areas of law including Family Law, Conveyancing and Property Law, Personal Injury Law, and Wills, Probate and Estate Matters. Her attention to detail and remarkable ability to multi-task across all matters within the firm results in her continually achieving outstanding results for her clients.

Cathy prides herself on providing clients with a compassionate and a personalised service, keeping clients in-the-know and informed about their matters every step of the way. Cathy’s clients are always appreciative of the excellent results she achieves for them.

Julie Robinson
Practice Manager

Julie is an experienced Practice Manager, overseeing the running of the entire office and staff.  She has previously worked for Law firms in the insurance industry and as a Sales Administrator at Revlon.

Julie is a strong consulting professional with a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Psychology from the Western Sydney University.  Julie has also studied at the College of Law completing her Certificate in Family Law and Mediation, and she is looking to complete her final training in Family Dispute Resolution Mediation in February 2021.

She has a demonstrated history of working in the law practice industry and continues our commitment to our clients to ensure that they receive valuable and prompt attention.  Julie is an astute manager, approachable and able to assist clients with any queries.

Maddy Bokenham

Maddy Bokenham is currently studying her Bachelor of Law and Arts (majoring in Criminology) and is excited to provide paralegal services at Able Defence Lawyers. She is thoroughly enjoying her studies, believing law to be an incredibly rewarding industry. Furthermore, she has a vast knowledge of Real Estate law, holding her Certificate of Registration for property services.

In her spare time, Maddy enjoys competitive debating and mock trials, which build upon her legal skills. She looks forward to applying this and the knowledge she has gained through her studies, to her work at Able Defence Lawyers.

Maddy takes great pride in performing above and beyond for the clients of Able Defence Lawyers and looks forward to providing a friendly, compassionate and efficient service.

Languages Spoken in the Firm

English, Afrikaans