Peter Dutton has accused Queensland magistrates of siding with criminals
Peter Dutton has accused Queensland magistrates of siding with criminals

Dutton slams Queensland judges

HOME Affairs Minister Peter Dutton has accused Queensland magistrates of siding with criminals, and blasted the decision to grant bail to an alleged cop-choker.

Mr Dutton, a former policeman - called for "a lot more scrutiny'' of magistrates appointed by the Palasczcuk Government.

"I'm sure there are some very good people within their ranks, but there are others that seem always to side with the offender and not the victim,'' he said yesterday.

"In Queensland we've only had Liberal National (Party) government for a handful of years over the last 30 years and you've had a lot of people who are former civil libertarians, former defence lawyers who are appointed to the bench.''


But Queensland Attorney-General Yvette D'Ath defended the appointments process saying Queensland "is a great example of a fair system for judicial appointments''.

Mr Dutton criticised the fact that bail had been granted to a man charged with allegedly choking a policewoman almost to the point of unconsciousness.

Hylton King was charged with two counts of serious assault for allegedly attacking two policewomen after he was evicted from the Brook Hotel in Mitchelton last week.

A Brisbane magistrate granted bail on Wednesday, on the grounds King had no criminal history that involved violence. He will return to court on June 17.

Police had argued that King, a New Zealand citizen, was a flight risk.

Mr Dutton yesterday blasted the bail decision.

"I don't believe how in that circumstance we can allow that person to be back out on the streets,'' he told Radio 2GB yesterday. Mr Dutton said magistrates were not above criticism or scrutiny.

Ms D'Ath said the Palaszczuk Government was the first to introduce a judicial appointment process.

Magistrates in Queensland are chosen by the Judicial Appointments Advisory Panel but Ms D'Ath can nominate candidates.