A convicted Illawarra paedophile has issued a chilling, public threat to a Wollongong courthouse staffer via video link just moments after being refused bail on child protection charges.
Brett Paul Lawrence was before the court on Monday afternoon accused of failing to comply with reporting conditions under the NSW Child Protection Register when he threatened the court support worker, who the Mercury has chosen not to name.
“He’s a p—fter; if he comes down here [to the cells] I’ll stab the c—t in the face,” Lawrence said when he heard the man’s name mentioned in connection with the proceedings.
It is understood the support worker has had previous dealings with Lawrence although he wasn’t in the courtroom when the threat was made.
Lawrence’s video feed was quickly severed, with presiding Magistrate Mark Douglass later saying he took Lawrence’s behaviour very seriously.
“I consider that [the threat] to be very serious and of concern given the court was considering that person for release on bail,” he said.
Meantime, Lawrence had only just finished telling Magistrate Douglass he would obey all directions of the court if released on bail, claiming he did not present a risk to community safety.
“I will not lie to youse (sic), I will tell you what I do, I swear to God,” he said.
Police opposed Lawrence’s bail, claiming he was evasive with officers and was actively trying to avoid his reporting obligations under the register.
Prosecutor Sergeant Eve Grey noted Lawrence had an extensive criminal record and was on the child protection register following a 2000 conviction for having sex with an underage child.
In refusing bail, Magistrate Douglass accepted Lawrence had been evasive with police.
“Detectives were trying to keep a very watchful and close eye on someone who in my view posses a risk to the community,” he said.
The case will return to court at a later date.