High-profile Australian charged with rape is a no-show at court as magistrate demands to know ‘why is he not here?’
- High-profile Australian charged with two counts of rape was a no show in court
- Man’s defence lawyer appeared on his behalf in Toowoomba Magistrates Court
- Magistrate questioned why his client had not appeared in person on Wednesday
- ‘He’s been given a notice to appear, why is he not here?’ magistrate asked lawyer
A high-profile man charged with two counts of rape stemming from an alleged incident in Toowoomba was a no-show at his court appearance.
Defence lawyer Rowan King instead appeared on the man’s behalf when the charges were first mentioned in Toowoomba Magistrates Court on Wednesday.
The man cannot be named at this stage under Queensland laws that prohibit the identification of those charged with alleged sexual assault or rape offences.
On Wednesday Mr King handed up bail conditions and medical documents while asking for an adjournment.
Magistrate Kay Ryan demanded to know why his client was not appearing in person.
‘He’s been given a notice to appear, why is he not here?’ she asked. The court was told the man is interstate.
Defence lawyer Rowan King instead appeared on the man’s behalf when the charges were first mentioned in Toowoomba Magistrates Court (pictured) on Wednesday
His bail conditions – which included a non-contact order and surrendering his passport – were not opposed by police.
Ms Ryan ordered a brief of evidence be delivered by February 15.
The man will return to the committal call-over court on February 22. Mr King did not comment to waiting media outside court.
Earlier, a Queensland Police Service spokesman said Toowoomba Criminal Investigation Branch detectives charged the man with the alleged rape of a young woman in October 2021.
The man cannot be named at this stage under Queensland laws that prohibit the identification of those charged with alleged sexual assault or rape offences (stock image)
Last year, the second Hear Her Voice report – which highlighted the experiences of women and girls across the criminal justice system – was handed down.
The report made 188 recommendations, including educational campaigns aimed to dispel rape myths, among others.
One of the key recommendations was the ability to name people charged with sexual offences in Queensland, bringing it into line with other states and jurisdictions.