By Caitlin Bewley
(1st Yr Swinburne Uni)
A Love Close resident is known for his ram Jackie Chan; stripping down to orange underpants at a Moorabool Shire Council meeting and now appearing in court, Hugh Heffner style, before Magistrate Simon Zebrowski in a bathrobe and a set of handcuffs.
Godwin Aquilina, a 51-year-old Bacchus Marsh man, was taken into custody for using an amplified megaphone to portray his views of the Moorabool council, in his front yard at 7:50am.
It was at this early hour of the morning Aquilina’s neighbours heard the accused swearing and ranting through a megaphone and proceeded to call Triple-000.
Prosecutor Senior Constable Lisa Schoemaker told the court that “[Aquilina] signed a bail bond on July 18 stating things he wasn’t permitted to do, including ‘not to create or make noise.’
“It was going on for several hours and we received a noise complaint,” the prosecutor said.
“Things like this have been going on for several months,” she told the court on Friday 10 August.
The accused’s lawyer told of Aquilina’s hardship having suffered a brain injury from a motor vehicle accident, and that “from his [Aquilina’s] point of view, he was making a protest on his strongly held views of the Bacchus Marsh council.”
“I think you should consider his time in the cell and discharge him,” the accused’s lawyer said.
“Why shouldn’t he pay for it?” Magistrate Zebrowski rebutted.
“It seems he just likes to do as he pleases.”
The accused’s lawyer continued to tell the court of Aquilina’s confusion about his bail terms and what he was and wasn’t allowed to do whilst on bail.
“He should have done more to realise what his bail was,” Magistrate Zebrowski said. “You can’t just sign a bail bond and say I don’t get it.”
Aquilina was convicted and sentenced to two days’ imprisonment.