Melbourne man has a face-to-face mask with his name and address on it that he was forced to wear during a court hearing.
The man, who cannot be named, said he was told he was a criminal and had to remove it after being charged with causing an explosion at a Melbourne house.
Key points:The man was charged with two counts of breaching a security zone after allegedly causing an apartment fire in JanuaryThe court heard he removed the mask before he was allowed to leave the buildingThe man’s face is covered with a mask that has his name on itAfter being charged, he was able to remove the mask and his name was on the mask when he was questioned by police.
“The mask is a very common mask to have in Australia, there is no reason why you couldn’t have it,” a senior police officer told the court.
“I think it’s a very important thing to protect yourself and I don’t know why you would want to remove your face mask to be at liberty to leave your home.”
The man is now in court for a bail hearing.
“My lawyer said to me, I know it’s quite a big thing for you to go through with it, but it’s just like you’re not really going to do anything wrong, so don’t worry,” the man told the hearing.”(The police officer) said he would be giving you a written statement to be able to prove you’re innocent, and that you should be very careful.”
Police officer says face mask ‘a very common’ maskThe man says he was shocked when he removed his mask.
“They said I have a mask on, I have no idea what I’m doing, I’ve never seen it before, so I’ve taken it off,” he said.
“It was just like, what am I going to say to the police?”
I was pretty shocked and then I thought, I just need to remove my mask and let them search it.
“The court also heard the man’s name was printed on the back of the mask, but the man could not identify it.”
What do you mean you can’t identify the mask?” the magistrate asked.”
If I tell them I can’t do anything about it, they can search it and I’ll tell them,” the lawyer replied.”
That’s a reasonable question,” the magistrate said.
The lawyer told the man the mask was made of plastic.”
Well, you know plastic,” the defendant said.”(I) just need my face to be covered, so that’s what I’ve done.
“He said the mask could be removed at any time, and he had a written consent form that showed he was not committing any offences.”
No, I don, no I can say that I can leave the house,” he told the magistrate.
The defendant was also asked about his passport and visa and the lawyer said he did not have the right to be questioned.”
He is an Australian citizen,” the court heard.”
We have an absolute right to know,” the police officer said.
Mr Justice Thomas asked whether the mask did have any significance to the offence, and the judge said he could not say for certain.
The hearing was adjourned until Monday.