Businessman fined for breaching COVID-19 health orders
A TOWNSVILLE business owner who breached coronavirus health orders has been hit with a $1200 fine.
Tony Joel Beed, 45, elected to take his charges to court after he was arrested and slapped with a $1334 fine for refusing to hand over his photo identification to police.
Beed, who runs a mining and construction training facility, was taken into custody at 12.30pm on May 2 at his West End workplace.
Beed and a colleague had been drinking and watching the State of Origin when officers attended the premise in response to noise.
Just half an hour earlier, strict public health requirements that forced people to stay at home unless absolutely necessary were eased to allow limited non-essential travel.
Beed pleaded guilty to contravening a requirement during a declared public health emergency in the Townsville Magistrates Court on Wednesday. He has previously faced a Townsville court in 2008 where a jury found him not guilty of unlawfully wounding a man in a scuffle at Bluewater.
Prosecutor Subarna Raut said police arrived at the business to find Beed, his colleague and both men's partners.
He said Beed became aggressive with officers when asked a number of times for his ID, telling them noise restrictions did not apply because it was an industrial area.
"The defendant refused and it is this refusal that constitutes the breach," Mr Raut said.
"When police requested he provide photographic identification (he) refused, stating that he 'didn't have to'."
"The community is not assisted, your Honour, by people such as the defendant who carry on in this bullish manner and almost refuse to accept that the law applies to them."
Defence lawyer Ralf Lake said the two men spent the day at the site for work and began drinking at the end of the day.
Police visited the site as both men's partners arrived to take them home.
Mr Lake said at the time of his arrest, Beed did not understand why he was arrested.
"At the time he was of the view that attendance at his work would not be classified as non-essential travel and watching TV and drinking at that location after work would otherwise not constitute a public gathering," he said.
In sentencing, Magistrate Ken Taylor told Beed his behaviour resulted in costs to the court system as well as himself.
"This could have been easily avoided if you had taken the time on the night in question to listen," he said.
Originally published as Businessman fined for breaching COVID-19 health orders