Peak Downs miner goes from big-time to broke amidst do­mes­tic vi­o­lence con­vic­tions

Daily Mercury - - COURT -

FOR­MERLY earn­ing about

$150,000 per year, a Peak Downs mine op­er­a­tor con­victed of breach­ing a do­mes­tic vi­o­lence or­der un­suc­cess­fully claimed un­fair dis­missal af­ter he was sacked by BHP.

Among a range of do­mes­tic vi­o­lence or­der breaches, the

44-year-old caused dam­age to a home which was the prop­erty of the com­pany, Mackay Mag­is­trates Court was told.

Fac­ing court from the dock in cus­tody on Fri­day, the Dysart de­fen­dant’s solic­i­tor, Aaron Sel­lentin, ex­plained his client was now ex­pe­ri­enc­ing sig­nif­i­cant fi­nan­cial dif­fi­culty and faced the prospect of los­ing al­most ev­ery­thing, in­clud­ing two homes and a car.

The man’s part­ner and one of his three chil­dren sat in the pub­lic gallery in sup­port, de­spite the man’s con­trol­ling and abu­sive be­hav­iour.

It was deemed “ap­palling” and “dis­grace­ful” by Mag­is­trate Mark Nolan, who lam­basted the man about his “con­trol­ling” and “dis­re­spect­ful” of­fend­ing.

The de­fen­dant pleaded guilty to one ag­gra­vated breach of a do­mes­tic vi­o­lence or­der on June 30 and two counts of us­ing a car­riage ser­vice to men­ace or ha­rass be­tween Fe­bru­ary 12 and May 17.

Pros­e­cu­tor Robert Beamish said the Dysart man had four prior breaches on his record and had been on pa­role for sim­i­lar of­fend­ing when the lat­est of­fences oc­curred.

Mr Beamish said the de­fen­dant sent threat­en­ing text mes­sages to a male friend of his part­ner, while Mr Nolan added that the man’s chil­dren had been forced to in­ter­vene in a volatile ar­gu­ment in which he broke a door. The man la­belled his part­ner a “dog” and ut­tered she “shouldn’t be among the liv­ing”, Mr Nolan said.

In de­fence, Mr Sel­lentin, of Bar­ron & Allen Lawyers, said his client had at­tended coun­selling and would gladly do so again. He ten­dered a let­ter of re­morse on be­half of the de­fen­dant.

Mr Nolan sen­tenced the man to nine months jail, order­ing re­lease on pa­role on No­vem­ber

23, declar­ing 68 days served be­fore sen­tence. The de­fen­dant must be of good be­hav­iour for

18 months, or he will for­feit

$1200 recog­ni­sance.

Photo: File

The man faced Mackay Mag­is­trates Court.

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