Monday, 11 May 2015

Campbell Newman's unwise decisions when Queensland premier continue to haunt that state

Correspondence between former Queensland police officer and former chief magistrate Chief Justice Tim Carmody, the President of the Court Of Appeal Justice Margaret McMurdo, Justice Hugh Fraser and others clearly demonstrates that an unwise political decision on the part of then Liberal National Party Premier Campbell Newman in 2014 will not be easily rectified.

Scroll to the end for the first email in the chain, dated 17 April 2015.

Correspondence between Queensland Chief Justice Tim Carmody, the President of the Court Of Appeal and other...


ABC News 9 May 2015:

Timeline of controversies surrounding Chief Justice Tim Carmody:
Nov 2013
Angered the legal profession by issuing a directive that all disputed bail applications made by alleged bikies be dealt with in one court room. That meant he would, most likely, be presiding over the controversial cases.
June 2013
Selected as chief justice despite never having sat on the Supreme Court, and after only nine months in the chief magistrate's job. Chosen over long-serving judges.
Jan 2014
Told newly appointed magistrates not to "meddle" with the controversial bikie laws.
June 2014
Bar Association President Peter Davis quits over appointment.
June 2014
Former Supreme Court judge Richard Chesterman QC and corruption fighter Tony Fitzgerald criticise appointment. Mr Sofronoff claimed Justice Carmody was too close to former Liberal National Party government. "His impartiality as between citizen and government has been called into question".
July 2014
Sworn in as Chief Justice behind closed doors, as controversy raged about his suitability for the job.
April 15, 2015
Met child protection advocate Hetty Johnston while still deliberating on whether Daniel Morcombe's accused killer should have his conviction overturned.
April 17
Court of Appeal President Margaret McMurdo raises issues of bias because of the meeting.
April 22
Justice Carmody responds that any suggestion of bias is "unsupported by precedent and utterly preposterous". Says it is "alarming" Justice McMurdo's associate investigates Ms Johnstone's comments over Cowan.
April 23
Justice McMurdo says "I cannot sit with him again on any Court".
April 29
It is revealed Justice Carmody did not read Justice McMurdo or Justice Fraser's draft judgements on Cowan appeal, despite being circulated in February.
May 7
Justice Carmody withdraws from Cowan appeal

Queensland Council for Civil Liberties vice-president Terry O'Gorman has also weighed in, calling on the Chief Justice to resolve the dispute.
"To have a Chief Justice make so many mistakes goes back to the fundamental issue of the botched appointment," he said. 
"The Chief Justice has the problem, the Chief Justice has to solve the problem. 
"The fact is the Chief Justice said a couple of months ago that if his occupying the position of Chief Justice made the position of the Supreme Court untenable ... he would resign, the position is becoming increasing untenable. 
"There are so many problems with the ongoing occupancy by Justice Carmody of the position of Chief Justice that this stalemate has to come to an end, this crisis has to be addressed. He is the only one who can address it."
Justice Carmody enjoyed a meteoric rise under the former Liberal National Party government and was promoted from Chief Magistrate, after a nine-month stint, despite never serving on the Supreme Court.
Leaders in the judiciary, including Justice Wilson, have publicly turned on him and questioned if he was ready for the top job or had enough peer support.

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