Magistrate puts man behind bars for calling him ‘mate’

November 1st, 2010 - 12:50 pm ICT by ANI  

Melbourne, Nov 1 (ANI): A magistrate reportedly put a man behind bars after he called him “mate” during a hearing in the courtroom last week.

Thomas John Collins had twice called Magistrate Matthew McLaughlin “mate’ even after an objection from the latter.

McLaughlin had ordered Collin to address him as “sir or your honour”, to which the defendant had replied “okay mate”.

He was then sent for a stint in the cells. McLaughlin later returned to the courtroom to apologise.

Councillor Paul Tully, Ipswich City, said a similar incident happened in Toowoomba, where a magistrate threatened to charge two tradesmen with contempt before the court for making too much noise.

Tully said the pomposity of some magistrates had gone too far and “It is getting out of control,” quoted Tully as saying.

“It’s probably time for magistrates to understand they have a wide variety of people before them and calling someone mate is a term of endearment.”

“I say to every magistrate - Come on mate, get off your high horse and show some tolerance”, Tully added.

He also called on the Queensland Chief Magistrate Judge Brendan Butler to introduce annual anger management classes for all Queensland magistrates. (ANI)

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