THE Supreme Court has upheld a barring order on a Hells Angels bikie gang member which banned him from 1400 venues — including hairdressing salons, the airport, a bakery and certain footpaths.
John Peter Stacy was charged with breaching a barring order preventing him from entering hundreds of Adelaide venues by attending the Savvy nightclub on Waymouth St in April 2013.
The court heard Stacy — who police said was a Hells Angels Motorcycle Club member — had been subject to a series of barring orders, including the expansive list of banned premises that was issued December 2012.
Under that order, Stacy was legally obliged to cross any road where there was an outside licensed dining area, or risk arrest.
The order also prevented Stacy from going to Adelaide Airport, several hairdressing salons, a bakery and numerous billiard halls.
Police used Stacy’s association with the Hells Angels as a basis for the order, arguing he was involved in two previous altercations, despite him not having been convicted of violent offences involving the gang.
Stacy, 26, was charged with breaching the order but applied for a permanent stay of proceedings, arguing the prosecution amounted to an abuse of process.
His lawyers argued the 55 pages of banned premises constituted an abuse of process because the barring orders issued by police were made “for ulterior purposes and so as to cause vexation and oppression”.
Magistrate Sue O’Connor last year ruled in Stacy’s favour and stayed the prosecution, on the basis that the orders were “absurdly wide” and “unfair”.
However, police appealed against Ms O’Connor’s ruling before Supreme Court judge Greg Parker, who found the magistrate had erred in her reasons for granting the permanent stay.
“Her Honour found that the barring orders imposed on Mr Stacy were absurdly wide in scope and for that reason, combined with the contemporaneous nature of some of the orders, they were unreasonably oppressive and unfair,” Justice Parker said.
“They were also unjust due to their broad scope. Mr Stacy was prevented from frequenting hotels, suburban cafes and restaurants, the football and many other venues.”
Ms O’Connor found there were no proper grounds for the Commissioner of Police to be satisfied that Stacy posed a danger to patrons and staff of all the 1400 premises.
However, Justice Parker found Ms O’Connor had overstepped the boundaries of her powers in ruling the orders were oppressive.
Lawyers for police argued that if Stacy believed the orders were unlawful, he should have challenged their validity with the Liquor and Gambling Commissioner.
Justice Parker said Ms O’Connor’s ruling constituted an error of law.
“While the magistrate made it clear her disapproval of the fashion in which police had used their powers to make a barring order ... that alone did not entitle her Honour to restrain an abuse of process,” Justice Parker found.
He overturned the permanent stay of proceedings and ordered Stacy again face the charge before another magistrate.