Bruce Lehrmann assembling fresh legal team for possible trial delay
The prosecution of Bruce Lehrmann for the alleged sexual assault of Brittany Higgins was in the ACT supreme court today for a callover (mention).
The acting chief justice, Michael Elkaim, asked if Lehrmannâ€™s legal team was going to apply for a permanent stay. This follows comments from his legal team questioning whether he is able to get a fair trial due to the amount of public discussion of the case.
John Korn replied there had been â€œno talk of a permanent stayâ€ and there is currently no application at present.
For a variety of reasons, for the moment that is all I can say. Thatâ€™s not to say there wonâ€™t be [an application for a stay], hopefully there will be. I wonâ€™t be counsel if there is such an application. [He is] getting a different legal team that can look after that.
Justice Elkaim said he had been told to say if there is to be an application, it should be in by mid-March.
The matter is going to be called over again for a brief mention before the chief justice on Thursday 10 March. Korn said he hoped to be able to explain Lehrmannâ€™s position then.
Shane Drumgold, the ACT director of public prosecutions, told the court this is the first heâ€™d heard of the possible application.
The matter is still listed for a four to five week trial beginning 6 June.
Earlier in June, Scott Morrison clarified an apology to victims of harassment in Australian Parliament House, stating it was â€œby no means a reflection on the matters before a courtâ€.