Lawyer fights practice ban after swearing in court

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High profile Rockhampton lawyer Doug Winning is facing eviction from the profession after uttering profanities in court during a trial.

Winning is now battling to keep his practicing certificate after calling prosecutor Danny Boyle a ‘f***ing idiot’ in court and with the jury present, three years ago.

According to The Courier Mail, Winning has pleaded guilty to two disciplinary charges brought by the Legal Services Commissioner.

He didn’t admit to the statements but says he won’t deny it because he can’t recall.  He did admit to accusing Boyle of dishonesty and misleading the court 17 times during the hearing.

The Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal heard that the comments, including calling the proceedings a ‘f***ing joke’, were recorded on the court audio and heard by an observer in the gallery, Boyle claiming that the remarks were deliberate and aimed at him.

 “It’s not fanciful that Mr Winning cannot recall precisely what was said,” Winning’s lawyer said, claiming the comments were ‘thoughts out loud’ and merely mutterings.  The tribunal heard that he may have sworn out of ‘frustration and anger’.

Two silks have pledged support for Winning, Elizabeth Wilson QC and Peter Davis QC reportedly stating that they would consult with him.

It’s the second time Winning has been before the tribunal after being officially reprimanded back in 2008 for a series of offensive remarks, the Courier Mail reported.

In 2004, Winning, who has represented notorious bikies, admitted to tipping off his bike client about a police raid, telling him to get rid of cash and drugs.  He was cleared of professional misconduct.

The tribunal has reserved its decision on whether Winning should be struck off or allowed to keep working under certain restrictions.