Man fined for dis­grace­ful act

Whitsunday Times - - LOCAL NEWS -

A VIC­TO­RIAN man seen defe­cat­ing in the Air­lie Beach la­goon re­turned to the re­gion this week for an ap­pear­ance in the Proser­pine Mag­is­trate’s Court.

Brod­er­ick Ken Fraser pre­vi­ously tried to plead guilty in writ­ing to the wil­ful dam­age charge but mag­is­trate Haydn St­jern­qvist re­fused to deal with the mat­ter in his ab­sence, say­ing his ap­pear­ance in court was re­quired.

The 24-year-old was ac­com­pa­nied by his mother on Mon­day.

Po­lice prose­cu­tor El­iz­a­beth Cas­sells said se­cu­rity staff at the Air­lie Beach la­goon con­tacted po­lice af­ter they saw Fraser defe­cat­ing in the chil­dren’s wad­ing pool at 11.10pm on Oc­to­ber 11. Ms Cas­sells said Fraser ran away from the pool and climbed a tree with a group of men.

She said when po­lice ap­proached, Fraser came down from the tree and ad­mit­ted defe­cat­ing in the pool, say­ing it was “some­thing stupid to do”.

Duty lawyer An­toinette Mor­ton said Fraser was re­morse­ful for his be­hav­iour and had suf­fered sig­nif­i­cant fi­nan­cial hard­ship as a re­sult of mak­ing the jour­ney to ap­pear in court.

“He’s cer­tainly learnt a very ex­pen­sive and valu­able les­son,” she said.

Mr St­jern­qvist said this was a “dis­grace­ful act” and a “vile dis­play of dis­re­spect” for a world-renowned at­trac­tion.

“Ev­ery­one comes from all over the world to have a swim in that la­goon,” he said.

Fraser was fined $500 and or­dered to pay $500 in resti­tution costs. The amount of resti­tution was agreed be­tween the par­ties present in court as Ms Cas­sells said Whit­sun­day Re­gional Coun­cil had not pro­vided a resti­tution quote.

No con­vic­tion was recorded against Fraser for the of­fence.

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