Now this is how you deal with an abusive defendant

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By Judge John Hack on

A New Zealand judge hands down what those on criminal benches across the world must be tempted to hail as the best bail judgment ever


District Court Judge Roy Wade will have understandably heaved a heavy sigh when he absorbed the form of one Scott Stills. The defendant, said the judge in a committal hearing, “has the most appalling criminal history I have ever, ever seen”.

And it is difficult to argue. Stills — who is currently facing another burglary charge for an alleged offence committed in the leafy, seaside Auckland suburb of Takapuna — has 285 previous convictions, 17 of which for burglary.

Indeed, he has committed 171 offences while previously on bail.

Hence, it is entirely understandable that Judge Wade would firmly rule that “there is no way in the world” he would be granting Stills bail this time round. One might imagine that the defendant would grudgingly accept that his luck on the bail front had finally run out.

But no, he wasn’t of that view, as the fully noted court transcript records. (For the avoidance of doubt, the defendant’s remarks are noted in square brackets.)


Not surprisingly, the bail judgment has been doing the rounds in the legal Twittersphere over the weekend. Judge Roy Wade, we salute you.

The full judgement can be read below:

Bail Judgment by David Farrar