Man pays price after lying about SAS duty to magistrate
A QUEENSLAND man who told a magistrate he was a former special air service soldier and rural firie has been jailed for 15 months after it was revealed nothing was further from the truth.
Peter James Andrews, 51, faced Brisbane Magistrates Court last December after becoming involved in the infamous bikie brawl on the Gold Coast.
Andrews, who was in fact a used car salesman, pleaded guilty to a charge of riot after admitting playing a minor role in the Broadbeach brawl on September 27 which sparked Queensland's bikie crackdown.
The court heard at the time he had been a probationary member of a criminal motorcycle gang for just a few months after the collapse of his marriage.
He has since cut all ties with the club.
It was submitted on his behalf that he was a former SAS solider who had completed tours in Somalia and Bougainville as well as being a member of the Queensland Rural Fire Service where he battled blazes near Tenterfield in Northern NSW.
He was subsequently sentenced to 100 hours community service and no convictions were recorded.
But it was all a ruse.
Andrews pleaded guilty today in the Brisbane District Court to attempting to pervert the course of justice and falsely representing to be a returned soldier.
Crown Prosecutor Michael Connolly told the court Andrews had deliberately misled the sentencing magistrate.
"This was deliberate. It was not an error or a mistake," he said.
"For what reason he did this still remains unknown."
Defence barrister Malcolm Harrison said the father-of-three had worked for the past three decades as a truck driver but had changed careers shortly before his arrest.
He said what affect Andrews' claims had on the sentencing magistrate remained unclear.
Judge Kieran Dorney sentenced Andrews to 15 months behind bars saying the offences were serious and struck at the heart of the judicial system.
"Army records show you enlisted but were discharged after being found not suitable to be a soldier," he said.
"You were a member of the rural fire service more than a decade ago."
Judge Dorney ordered the 224 days Andrews had served behind bars as time already served and ordered he be released on immediate parole.