Bid for release from a high security cell
A PRISONER who made a desperate bid to have his charges dealt with without legal representation will remain in a high security prison section after being unsuccessful in his attempt.
Peter John Burns appeared in the Proserpine Magistrate’s Court on Monday via a video link with the Capricornia Correctional Centre where he has been since shortly after his arrest on February 15.
The 57-year-old Mt Julian man is accused of fraud, receiving tainted property, improper use of an emergency call service and using a Telstra service to threaten to kill. Last week he told magistrate Haydn Stjernqvist these were all malicious allegations but this week he told magistrate Ron Muirhead he wanted to plead guilty and be dealt with straight away. “Your Honour, I’ve been in this high security prison for five weeks now – I want it dealt with today,” he said.
Burns told the court his legal aid application had been refused and he was happy to proceed without a solicitor but police prosecutor Elizabeth Smith said the legal aid decision was being reviewed “and it’s likely a grant will come through”. Mr Muirhead told Burns his parole had been revoked so regardless of Monday’s outcome he would remain in prison until his full-time discharge date in July 2015.
Mr Muirhead said he appreciated Burns’ situation with respect to being held in high security until sentence was passed “but that’s out of my control”.
“I think you should have a solicitor,” he said.
The charges were adjourned to April 7 when Burns will again appear via video link.