A Western Australian man accused of traveling to Canberra to “float” treasurer Josh Frydenberg is behind bars after being denied bail in ACT Magistrates Court today.
Most important points:
- Ian Mellowship was charged with trespass and threatened to harm the treasurer
- Mr Mellowship says he should be released from prison for not following the threats
- The Chief Magistrate invited him to seek legal advice, rather than continue to represent himself
The court heard that Ian Stewart Mellowship had gone to both the Treasury Building and Parliament House to tell security personnel about his plan.
He was charged with trespass and two counts of threatening Mr Frydenberg.
When the charges were read to him today by Chief Magistrate Lorraine Walker, Mr Mellowship pleaded guilty and asked for bail.
He represented himself and told the court that he should be released.
He also pointed out that he had not carried out the threats.
Suspect did not leave town until he made a threat, court heard
But prosecutor Cecilia Pascoe told the court there were serious concerns about Mr Mellowship, following a psychological assessment.
“He said he won’t leave Canberra until the job is done, the job is to attack the treasurer,” Ms Pascoe said.
Mr Mellowship denied that he posed a threat.
“The words I [said], but there is no action,” he told the court.
Chief Magistrate Walker refused to bail him, and also refused to accept his admission of guilt.
She invited him to seek legal advice, suggesting a lot was at stake.
“You’re looking at the prospect of going to jail,” she said.
She also told the court that she was concerned about Mr Mellowship’s suitability to plead.
In response, Mr Mellowship said there was no need for an assessment of his suitability to make a plea.
“I understand…I’m not a retard,” he said.
The case will return to court next month.