Mr Byrnes was born and educated in Brisbane. He spent 11 years employed in the Queensland Department of Justice working first in the Crown Solicitor’s Office and then in the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions. Whilst with the Department of Justice Mr Byrnes graduated from the University of Queensland with a bachelor of laws and was called to the Bar on 6 June 1994. Mr Byrnes has been at the private bar since September 2000 practising from Halsbury Chambers.
Mr Byrnes is a specialist in relation to prosecutions brought by way of complaint and summons under Part 6 of the Justices Act 1886 which is the principal method of prosecuting non-Criminal Code offences in Queensland.
He is an experienced criminal advocate with many years experience in appearing both on summary trials in the Magistrates Court and before juries in the superior courts.
Mr Byrnes has broad coronial experience having acted as counsel assisting the coroner and having represented individuals and government departments in inquests. He also whilst seconded to the Inquiry Legal Representation Office represented parties before the Carter Inquiry into Police Corruption.
Mr Byrnes has appeared before numerous different tribunals and courts including the Land Court. He has practiced in a number of areas over the years including family, administrative/judicial review and valuation/water appeals.