Fitness for trial; trial in the absence of (unrepresented) litigant; contempt of court and evidentiary issues

Floyd, Louise (2010) Fitness for trial; trial in the absence of (unrepresented) litigant; contempt of court and evidentiary issues. Australian Bar Review, 33 (1). pp. 56-66.

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Abstract

[Extract] Overview of case: On 19 March 2009, Ms Megumi Ogawa [*3] (the appellant), a Japanese national who had been a law lecturer, was found guilty by a jury in the Queensland District Court of using a carriage service (particularly telephone and email) to threaten court staff at the Federal Court of Australia. That first instance decision was significant not only because of those facts, but because the learned trial judge, the Honourable Judge Durward QC, found that Ogawa 'was deliberately seeking to avoid a trial by feigning mental incapacity'. n3 His Honour came to that conclusion based on his observations of Ogawa n4 and expert medical evidence. Due to her constant screaming in court, part of the trial occurred in the absence of the appellant. On learning the guilty verdict, Ms Ogawa engaged in further conduct which was held to be in contempt of court. She was imprisoned.

Item ID: 15679
Item Type: Article (Case Study)
ISSN: 0814-8589
Date Deposited: 07 Mar 2011 00:25
FoR Codes: 18 LAW AND LEGAL STUDIES > 1801 Law > 180110 Criminal Law and Procedure @ 100%
SEO Codes: 94 LAW, POLITICS AND COMMUNITY SERVICES > 9404 Justice and the Law > 940403 Criminal Justice @ 100%
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