Man cleared of insulting Qld magistrate

Alan Jorgensen has been cleared of contempt over a comment he made against a Cairns magistrate.
Alan Jorgensen has been cleared of contempt over a comment he made against a Cairns magistrate.

A man jailed over accusations he asserted a Queensland magistrate was corrupt has been cleared of contempt.

Alan Bradley Jorgensen was ordered to serve six weeks' jail for contempt of court for the comment he made during his 2018 fraud trial.

During a lengthy exchange about the admissibility of evidence, Mr Jorgensen suggested Cairns magistrate Joe Pinder was trying to protect the prosecution's fraud case against him.

Mr Pinder described the suggestion as "outrageous", and said it was clear Mr Jorgensen was asserting he was corrupt.

Mr Jorgensen denied the claim, but was charged with contempt of court.

He was sentenced to three months' jail, suspended for two years after serving six weeks behind bars.

Mr Jorgensen appealed the conviction on a number of grounds, including that Mr Pinder "erred manifestly" in finding he had made assertions of corruption.

He claimed he was denied procedural fairness, and was not given sufficient time or means to defend himself.

The Brisbane District Court this week found Mr Jorgensen did not wilfully insult Mr Pinder.

The court found Mr Jorgensen was not provided with the opportunity to seek legal advice on the matter, nor was he granted his request for a transcript of the alleged contemptuous comment in order to prepare his defence.

Mr Jorgensen's conviction has been quashed and he may now apply for costs.

Australian Associated Press