Bizarre court defence: 'I've been kidnapped, Your Honour'

A ROMA man has used the defence that he was kidnapped as character evidence in his self-represented court case.

Nathan Ross Coveney was sentenced to 12 months jail after he was found guilty of seven charges in the Roma Magistrate Court on Tuesday.

In his defence, Coveney told the court about his hardships in life that had led to him making bad decisions and ultimately resulted in the criminal offences.

He described these challenges and went on to say that he was kidnapped by assailants, which left him both physically and mentally scarred.

"I've been out of home since I was 16, I lost my dad when I was in prison and didn't get to go to the funeral. I lost my missus and children to my best friend and since then I haven't been the same. I've been kidnapped, Your Honour," Coveney said.

"I can't say the name of who but I was kidnapped and taken out bush and I had my shoulder smashed."

The seven charges against Coveney included one charge of entering a premise and committing an indictable offence, one charge of wilful damage, two charges of assaulting a police officer, one breach of bail and two trespassing charges.

Police prosecutor Sergeant Shannon Bryce relayed the evidence to the court, describing Coveney's attempt to run away from police.

"With respect to one of the seven charges, police have approached the defendant on the street to question him about his failure to appear in court when all of a sudden the defendant turned around and then began to run along Miscamble St," he said.

This then resulted in a foot pursuit of Coveney, which led to subsequent charges.

Magistrate Hasted did not accept Coveney's defence for his crimes, instead suggesting he take action against those he claims caused him harm.

"You speak of being apprehended by persons, who you are not prepared to name, that have injured you in a very serious way.

"The appropriate and conventional thing to do, Coveney in respect of those people is to make complaints to police."

Coveney admitted in his defence that he was under the influence of drugs at the time of the offences.

"Your life is an example of a life that has been ruined by the use of dangerous drugs," Hasted said.

"We all have difficulties, Mr Coveney, in our life but the mark and the character of a person is how you deal with those difficulties in your life."

Coveney can apply for parole on December 21.   


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