Thursday, June 29, 2017

R v Barker

Caution: Swear words in the post below.


I was discussing with some friends the contents of the post below, which was posted in Bytes in November 2012.  I was encouraged by them to post it again, so for those who have not seen it before, and those who have seen it but don't recall it (those like us, getting older), here it is . . .

On 29 October 1880, Ned Kelly engaged in spirited exchanges with the presiding judge at his murder trial, Mr Justice Redmond Barry. That exchange, in the Supreme Court of Victoria, Melbourne, has been the subject of a previous Bytes and can be read at: 

Some 142 years later, in the Supreme Court of Queensland, Brisbane, one David Allan Baker engaged Mr Justice Martin Daubney in repartee which was also spirited but left a lot to be desired as far as courtesy was concerned. 

I am indebted to Byter Leo for putting me onto it in an email. 

After receiving it I looked into the background and circumstances of Mr Baker’s colourful discussion with Judge Daubney and found that the transcript was entirely accurate.

Mr Justice Daubney

After receiving it I looked into the background and circumstances of Mr Baker’s colourful discussion with Judge Daubney and found that the transcript was entirely accurate. 

Background to the case: 

Baker, 50, had been charged with attempted murder after stabbing his former girlfriend Margaret Revesz, 42, in the heart with a knife on 2 November 2009 at her Bray Park home, 25 kilometres north of Brisbane. On 22 June 2012 he was convicted and sentenced to 15 years imprisonment. The jury was told that Baker, after allegedly stabbing Ms Revesz in the heart twice, told her: "Margie, what have I done? Will you wait for me? I'm going to jail for a long time.'' 

Upon being convicted and sentenced, a section of transcript was released that had not previously been reported on or published in that it could have been prejudicial to his trial if a juror had read it. 

Background to the transcript: 

When Baker’s case had come to trial on an earlier occasion, he had been granted an adjournment after he had sacked his legal team, barrister and solicitors. 

Baker sacked his new solicitor on June 3, the day before the trial was to start. The solicitor and the barrister briefed by the solicitor thereupon sought leave to withdraw from the proceedings. Daubney J granted leave but directed that the trial should still proceed the next day as listed, as it did with new legal counsel appointed to represent Baker. 

Baker wasn’t too happy at Judge Daubney's insistence that the trial proceed and let his displeasure be known to His Honour, who managed to remain calm and dignified. 

The transcript: 

HIS HONOUR: I have been informed, Mr Baker, that you wish to dispense with the services of your solicitor and as a consequence of that your barrister is also seeking leave to withdraw, which means you will be self-represented for this trial. Do you understand that? 

DEFENDANT: Yes. 

HIS HONOUR: So you'll be representing yourself for this trial, do you understand? 

DEFENDANT: No, no way in the world. 

HIS HONOUR: Yes, way in the world. 

DEFENDANT: I'll get a new solicitor and barrister. 

HIS HONOUR: No, you tried that last time, Mr Baker. 

DEFENDANT: Look, now listen here, mate, you don't know what you're fucking talking about. 

HIS HONOUR: Now you listen to me. 

DEFENDANT: Don't blooming start your shit, right, mate. 

HIS HONOUR: You listen here Mr Baker. 

DEFENDANT: You weren't fucking there so don't start your crap. 

HIS HONOUR: Mr Baker. 

DEFENDANT: Were you there? 

HIS HONOUR: Mr Baker. 

DEFENDANT: Were you there? Were you there? No you fucking weren't. 

HIS HONOUR: Mr Baker. 

DEFENDANT: Because the arseholes did the wrong thing. Right? Read your fucking paragraph or scripts, mate. Don't start putting your fucking heavy crap on me. 

HIS HONOUR: Now, Mr Baker... 

DEFENDANT: You can get stuffed. 

HIS HONOUR:...the trial will be... 

DEFENDANT: I don't give a ... 

HIS HONOUR:...proceeding.... 

DEFENDANT: ...fuck, you and your trial mate. Stick your trial up your fucking arse. I'll go. 

HIS HONOUR: Sit down please Mr Baker. 

DEFENDANT: No, get stuffed. 

HIS HONOUR: Oh, all right. Now, Mr Baker, the trial will be proceeding. There is one matter that does need to be attended to. The principal witness for the Crown in this trial is a person who has the status of a ... 

DEFENDANT: I don't even know why you're fucking talking about mate. Talk in normal lingo, language. 

HIS HONOUR: The complainant in respect of the count of attempted murder is a person who ... 

DEFENDANT: Who are you fucking talking about? 

HIS HONOUR: ... is a... 

DEFENDANT: Stop talking in riddles. 

HIS HONOUR: ... is a protected witness under the Evidence Act and for the purposes of the trial, you will not be ... 

DEFENDANT: I don't know what you're fucking talking about. 

HIS HONOUR: Well, if you stop shouting at me and listen to what I'm saying you might start understand. 

DEFENDANT: What do you want me to fucking do? 

HIS HONOUR: What I want you to do is stop swearing at me and listen to me. 

DEFENDANT: I'm not going to fucking stop swearing at you. 

HIS HONOUR: All right then, it's a matter for you. 

DEFENDANT: Stick your fucking trial up your arse. 

HIS HONOUR: That won't be happening to me. 

DEFENDANT: I couldn't give a shit mate. 

HIS HONOUR: Well, that's a matter for you. 

DEFENDANT: Well you can start your trial and stick it up your arse cause I'm not having anything to do with it. 

HIS HONOUR: Sit down. 

DEFENDANT: No you get fucked. 

HIS HONOUR: Sit down. 

DEFENDANT: Go and get fucked. 

HIS HONOUR: Sit down, please. 

DEFENDANT: I'm not fucking doing what you say. Up you. 

HIS HONOUR: Sit down. 

DEFENDANT: You're not going to fucking tell me I'm going to be representing meself at all. I need legal aid. I need representation and not you and or any other fucking arseholes gonna tell me anything different. 

HIS HONOUR: Sit down, please. 

DEFENDANT: No, get stuffed. 

HIS HONOUR: If you don't sit down I'll have you manacled. 

DEFENDANT: You can fucking have what you like mate. 

HIS HONOUR: Corrective Services could you please restrain the accused.. 

DEFENDANT: Fuck you. 

HIS HONOUR: Mr Bailiff, could you ask security to attend the court please. 

DEFENDANT: Do what you fucking like. I've got no representation so that's it I'm not listening. I don't give a damn what you say . 

HIS HONOUR: The next people entering the court are the court security staff. 

DEFENDANT: Oh, what do you want me to do? What do you want, a Mickey Mouse badge? 

HIS HONOUR: No. 

DEFENDANT: Stick it on your fat chest? Hey? What do you want? A Mickey Mouse badge. Come on fatso, what have you got to say for that? 

DEFENDANT: Oh, the mouse has gone quiet. 

HIS HONOUR: Security could I ask you to take up positions immediately behind the accused. If he moves from that chair you are to assist the Corrective Services personnel in restraining him. You are not to move, do you understand me Mr Baker. 

DEFENDANT: Get fucked. 

HIS HONOUR: Mr Baker, because (Margaret) Revesz ... 

DEFENDANT: Listen here lardarse, no fuck you. I don't give a fucking shit what you say. 

HIS HONOUR: Because Ms R... 

DEFENDANT: I don't give a shit what you fuckin' say. 

HIS HONOUR: ... is a protected witness ... 

DEFENDANT: I'm telling you now you can get fucked. All right? 

HIS HONOUR: ... the law requires ... 

DEFENDANT: Are you stupid or what? I don't give a shit what you fuckin' say. 

HIS HONOUR: ... that I arrange for you to be given free legal assistance by Legal Aid. 

DEFENDANT: I don't give a fuck. I couldn't give a shit what you say. What, are you deaf? 

HIS HONOUR: ... for the cross-examination of that protected witness.... 

DEFENDANT: Hey, lardarse, can't you fuckin' hear me? 

HIS HONOUR: ... unless you arrange for legal representation .. 

DEFENDANT: What are you deaf? 

HIS HONOUR: ... or unless you do not want that protected witness to be cross-examined. 

DEFENDANT: What the fuckin' talking about, I don't know what you're fuckin' talking about, lardarse. 

HIS HONOUR: Is there anything that you want to say in relation to me making an order ... 

DEFENDANT: Yeah, I don't know what you're fuckin' talking about, you silly old cunt. 

HIS HONOUR: Thank you for that submission, in which case I order... 

DEFENDANT: Well, you can fuckin' order what you like. 

HIS HONOUR: ... that Ms R... 

DEFENDANT: Order me a fuckin' pizza while you're at it. 

HIS HONOUR: ... is a protected witness for this proceeding ... 

DEFENDANT: Who gives a shit. 

DEFENDANT: Wait, what are these two fuckheads doing here then if they're not fuckin' representing me? 

HIS HONOUR: I give you leave to withdraw. Thank you both very much for your assistance. 

DEFENDANT: Yeah, piss off. Fuckin’ dogs. 


Some discussion about the trial opening... 


DEFENDANT: What's this fuckin' opening brief and that you're talking about, lardarse? 

HIS HONOUR:If your opening is going to be that short then you'll want to call the complainant pretty well straight away. 

CROWN PROSECUTOR: That's so, yes. I would submit the most prudent course is perhaps to allow the panel to go and then look to empanelling them tomorrow. 

HIS HONOUR: Yes, all right then. Now, Mr Baker, you can continue to interrupt me or you can listen to what I'm going to say. 

DEFENDANT: I don't give a fuck, I need representation. 

HIS HONOUR: No we're beyond that stage. 

DEFENDANT: No, hey, listen here you fuckin' stupid old cunt, I've got fuckin' paperwork here, if you weren't so pigheaded and using your big fuckin' fat lard arse, you might have fuckin' read it before you fuckin' jumped the gun, eh, but no, you had your fuckin' cocking mates here going on like a two bob fuckin' watch. I never said anything about fuckin' Don MacKenzie. I had a complaint against Ken fuckin' MacKenzie, right, not my barrister. I had nothing to complain about him, it was the other fuckin' prick and I wrote you a letter to fuckin' explain why. 

HIS HONOUR: Was there anything else you wanted to say to me at the moment? 

DEFENDANT: Yeah, why don't you fuckin' read it and see why I wanted to - what was it - blimmin' to adjourn for a while. There was a fuckin' reason for it. 

HIS HONOUR: No, there's no adjournments, Mr Baker, you've had ... 

DEFENDANT: Well, I don't give a stuff. You can't fuckin' sentence me or do anything because I'm doing a plea. The thing was when I got my plea overturned last fuckin' time, did you read it, why - what happened was because the barrister and solicitor stuffed up. I was putting in a complaint about Ken MacKenzie not revealing the parts I needed for my trial but you wouldn't listen. 

HIS HONOUR: Thank you for that information. Now what's going to happen is this ... 

DEFENDANT: I don't give a shit what happens, anyone comes in here, I'll fuckin disturb and I'll run amok. 

HIS HONOUR: Not in my courtroom you won't. 

DEFENDANT: Hey, don't fuckin' tell me I fuckin' won't mate. 

HIS HONOUR: Not in my courtroom you won't. 

DEFENDANT: You think these fuckin' jokers are going to worry me? Or the screws, what are you going to fuckin' do? 

HIS HONOUR: Whether they worry you or not is a matter for you. 

DEFENDANT:What are you going to fuckin' do to me. 

HIS HONOUR: What I'm going to do to you is tell you that your trial is starting tomorrow. 

DEFENDANT: Oh no fuckin' way mate. 

HIS HONOUR: Oh yes, your trial is starting tomorrow. 

DEFENDANT: You want a fuckin' bet? You want a fuckin' bet? I'll tell you what, I'll make a fuckin' bet, I'll make a bet with you and I tell you what, you'll lose your fuckin' fat arse. I'll put myself in medical, you cunt. I'll fuckin' slash up or I'll do something. You don't fuckin' threaten me you fuckin' dog. 

HIS HONOUR: You can take the accused down, thank you. I'll see you tomorrow morning at 10 o'clock. 

DEFENDANT: No I fuckin' won't, I tell you fuckin' now, you fuckin' lard arse. 

HIS HONOUR: Thank you for coming up gentleman, I'm grateful. I was actually called much worse things on the rugby paddock you know. 


“I don't know what you're fuckin' talking about, you silly old cunt.”

“Thank you for that submission.”


"Stick your fucking trial up your arse." 

"That won't be happening to me."


Love it.






Love it.

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