Accused wants judge to face treason charge
A man facing racial hatred charges has labelled a Perth trial a kangaroo court and told the presiding judge he should be facing treason charges.
Brendon Lee O'Connell, 38, is representing himself before a jury in the Perth District Court, after firing the lawyer who was defending him against charges relating to an allegedly anti-semitic video he posted online.
During opening submissions on Monday, prosecutor Anthony Eyers said O'Connell faced seven charges related to the blog posting of a verbal altercation he had with a Jewish man named Stanley Keyser.
The argument followed O'Connell's visit to an IGA store in South Perth on May 2, 2009 for a Friends of Palestine group protest against Israeli fruit.
Mr Ayers said O'Connell had made several other anti-semitic posts on his blog in October and November 2009.
When he entered the court on Monday, O'Connell refused to make the customary bow to Judge Henry Wisbey and became agitated during an opening submission in which he repeatedly referred to common law and the King James Bible.
About a dozen supporters sat in the public gallery cheering him on.
"Is this court sitting in a common law court?" O'Connell asked Judge Wisbey.
"Do you want to say anything about the nature of your defence?" Judge Wisbey replied.
O'Connell ignored the direction and instead demanded Judge Wisbey be indicted for treason.
O'Connell told the visibly shocked jury that he knew the law and was "not a fool".
Continuing to ignore the judge's attempted directions, he said he wanted the jury to become a "grand jury".
Gesturing towards the court emblem over the judge, he described the proceedings as a "kangaroo court" that could not proceed until his concerns were addressed.
He said it would take 40 days to process his concerns, to which Judge Wisbey quipped: "And 40 nights?"
Sitting down for the first time after Judge Wisbey had told Mr Eyers to call his first witness, O'Connell continued to laugh and mimic a kangaroo to his supporters in the gallery.
While questioning the first witness, Mr Eyers showed the video of O'Connell at the IGA store talking to Mr Keyser.
"You think the world revolves around you," O'Connell had told Mr Keyser.
"You have a religion of racism, hate, homicide and ethnic cleansing."
He was recorded repeatedly calling Mr Keyser a "racist Jew".
"You are a racist, homicidal maniac," he said.
Mr Keyser tried to walk away following the altercation but O'Connell followed him onto the street and the two began a minor scuffle where Mr Keyser tried to grab O'Connell's camera.
"You hit me in the face," Mr Keyser said.
"You're lucky that's all I did, mate," O'Connell replied.
The trial continues.