News

Political blogger will 'vigorously defend' stalking claims

Petros Khalesriad and lawyer Kris Jahnke leave Rockhampton Court House after having their bail variation application dismissed.
Petros Khalesriad and lawyer Kris Jahnke leave Rockhampton Court House after having their bail variation application dismissed. Chloe Lyons

A POLITICAL blogger accused of stalking Keppel MP Brittany Lauga has been banned from using Facebook or coming within 100 metres of Ms Lauga and her family.

Petros Khalesirad, who has been charged with unlawfully stalking Ms Lauga between February 20 and August 27, failed in an attempt to vary his bail conditions in Rockhampton Magistrates Court.

The bail conditions entered into by Mr Khalesirad at the Rockhampton watchhouse on August 27 stipulated he must not directly or indirectly contact or come within 100 metres of Ms Lauga and her family, he is prohibited from using social media or any public forum to make comment or post material in reference to Ms Lauga and her family, and must not approach or enter Ms Lauga's residence or office.

But Mr Khalesirad's lawyer, Kris Jahnke argued the bail conditions imposed on his client were having an economic impact on his life as he was unable to fulfil his role as a political blogger.

 

Mr Jahnke said Mr Khalesirad was a freelance journalist and his "constitutional right to implied political freedom" was being impinged upon because he was unable to make comment about Ms Lauga.

The proposed bail variation put to the court would allow Mr Khalesirad to comment on Ms Lauga online, but not contact her via her personal number, email or go to her house.

Mr Jahnke requested the 100 metre exclusion zone around Ms Lauga's office be amended as it prevented Mr Khalesirad from seeing four clients in that area.

The potential defence Mr Jahnke said he intended to use in a future trial existed under the stalking legislation and stated any contact in relation to political opinion could be excused as unlawful stalking.

Police prosecutor Clancy Fox told the court the police opposed the bail variation.

He alleged harassment suffered by Ms Lauga caused her detriment and hindered her from doing things she would normally do and added there was possibly an inference in the text messages Mr Khalesirad was sending Ms Lauga that he was monitoring her home, leading to insecurity of privacy and safety.

Mr Fox said the rights and risks must be balanced in relation to bail conditions adding a consequence of bail was having your rights infringed on for a period of time.

Magistrate Michael O'Driscoll told the court he wasn't convinced the bail conditions were too onerous, adding the allegations against Mr Khalesirad were serious and could lead to a term of imprisonment.

Mr O'Driscoll also commented that the proposed bail variation suggested that Mr Khalesirad still wished to have some contact with Ms Lauga's office.

Mr Khalesirad and his lawyer contend they will be "vigorously defending" the allegations.

The case has been adjourned to November 9 for a summary review where a brief of evidence will be presented.

Topics:  brittany lauga, editors picks, petros khalesirad, politics


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

REVEALED: Queensland's fuel theft hotspots

The number of petrol theft cases in Queensland is on the increase

Eagleby supermarket theft

Police need your help.

Upgrades under way for Daisy Hill

IMPROVEMENTS: Mick de Brenni MP pictured last year with John Saville and Sandra Lott at Daisy Hill Forest.

Upgrades on the way for Daisy Hill forest.

Local Partners

Tiahleigh Palmer: Foster brother bashed in prison

Trent Thorburn assaulted in prison

It's all about respect

ON A MISSION: #R4Respect ambassadors Jennifer Uwineza and Andrew Taukolo.

Ambassadors head to conference.

Eagleby supermarket theft

Police need your help.

Upgrades under way for Daisy Hill

IMPROVEMENTS: Mick de Brenni MP pictured last year with John Saville and Sandra Lott at Daisy Hill Forest.

Upgrades on the way for Daisy Hill forest.

Local shoppers help children's hospice

Coles Queensland state manager Paul Bradshaw, community relations officer Sonja Marsden and Hummingbird House co-founder Paul Quilliam.

Fundraising for Hummingbird House.

Free food feeds locals

Kea McCarthy of Tanah Merah with her sons, Zac, 4, Jonah, 1, and Maxim, 6, with free food provided the Tribe of Judah Care that helps many families in Logan.

NEED for help increasing.

Council to deploy quad bikes to check footpaths

BROKEN PATHS: Field engineers Teyen Widdicombe and Luke Gibney will survey Logan's footpaths on quad bikes.

Bikes to survey Logan's paths.

Grocery store theft

Police need your help.

Classic car auction draws buyers from US, Dubai

"He wants everyone to enjoy the cars, the collection got too big'

MOVIE REVIEW: Storks delivers family fun

A scene from the movie Storks.

ANIMATION can be hit or miss but when it hits, it hits hard.

Nick 'the snake' to call the shots on Survivor jury

Australian Survivor contestant Nick Iadanza.

LATEST evictee is out of the game but will still have a say.

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber split

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber

Naomi Watts and Liev Schreiber have split after 11 years together.

Why Chris Hemsworth was spotted wearing nail polish

RED CARPET: Do you think Chris Hemsworth is the typical unpolished but well-natured Aussie bloke?

He's now officially the best bloke in Australia

Testament's new album is a concept album

ROME, ITALY- JULY 27, 2016: Testament photographed at The Roman Collisseium in Rome, Italy on July 27,2016. Gene Ambo

Testament to release new album

'Baby' recreates famous Nirvana cover shot 25 years later

The baby from Nevermind album has recreated the iconic cover shot.

$40million hotel, shops development project for Mackay

Mt Pleasant hotel and retirement accommodation, proposed at 194-202 Malcomson St.

$40m development to take Mackay to 'the next level'

Five ways to slash household bills and save the environment

THINK GREEN: Considering the environment when building or buying your next home can save you big dollars. The Village Building Company, who is responsible for Woodlinks Village at Collingwood Park, builds homes with this front of mind.

THERE is nothing as sweet as slashing dollars from your bills.

Property 200m from ocean selling for just over $100K

BEACHCOMBER PARK: Work has started on a new $19.2 million development at Toogoom.

The estate's developer is offering huge discounts for early buyers.

UPDATE: Former rodeo champ's sale rained out, now back on

Larkhill local Ken Consiglio is having an auction of most of the things on his property.

'People kept showing up and we had to turn them away'

First stages of $25 million housing development underway

New development on Madsen Rd - The Springs.

The blocks of land are much bigger than usual

Couple build their own 'tiny house' for $45k

Holly Bowen and Oli Bucher built their "tiny house" themselves, only hiring a plumber and an electrician. Photo/supplied

The house, which is built on a trailer and can be towed.