July 30, 2019
A Canberra lawyer who helped blow the whistle on Australia spying on East Timor has demanded his case be heard in the Supreme Court, which could split his case off from a former intelligence officer.
Bernard Collaery and a former spy known as Witness K are jointly accused of revealing information about Australia bugging East Timor’s cabinet rooms in 2004.
The bugging took place during negotiations over a gas and oil treaty.
In a move which could split the accused pair, Mr Collaery’s lawyer told Canberra Magistrates Court his client wanted to be indicted to the Supreme Court.
But Witness K would prefer the matter to remain with the ACT Magistrates Court, his lawyer, Robert Richter QC, told the court on Tuesday.
Charged in June 2018, the case has languished in the lower court as both defence teams wrangle with the Commonwealth over a set of orders controlling what information can be revealed during the trial.