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Bid for Patel's manslaughter charge to be put on hold rejected

Former Bundaberg surgeon Jayant Patel
Former Bundaberg surgeon Jayant Patel Dave Hunt

DR JAYANT Patel will face trial early next year for manslaughter after he lost his bid to have the criminal charge permanently stayed.

In handing down his decision regarding the former Bundaberg surgeon's application, Supreme Court Justice George Fryberg took a swipe at the prosecution for providing incomplete and embarrassing particulars as part of their case.

In a written judgment delivered on Thursday, Justice Fryberg stated particulars were supposed to inform an opponent and a trial judge about the detail a party relied on and to adhere to their particularised case.

"The deficiencies in these particulars mean they do not achieve that objective," he said.

"There is a need for the prosecution to identify precisely what its case is, to work out which of its allegations stand alone (if any) and which act in conjunction..."

Justice Fryberg said the particulars put forward were "incomplete and embarrassing" and revealed there were even further deficiencies that he saw no point delving into.

"It is not the function of the trial judge to write the prosecution's particulars for it; I say no more," he stated.

Dr Patel is scheduled to face trial for the manslaughter of Mervyn Morris, 75, at Bundaberg Base Hospital in June 2003.

The Crown alleges Dr Patel was negligent in ordering Mr Morris undergo an operation.

Mr Morris died in post-operative care after surgery.

In their application for the manslaughter charge to be permanently stayed, Dr Patel's legal team argued the Crown planned to use matters abandoned in Patel's first manslaughter trial.

A High Court quashed Patel's conviction earlier this year and the Director of Public Prosecutions subsequently ordered a retrial.

Justice Fryberg ordered some of the Crown's particulars be struck out.

He stated the Crown should state when it alleges the incorrect diagnosis was made and particularise what investigations into the condition of Mr Morris's liver should have been carried out.

Justice Fryberg ordered the Crown file "proper particulars" before January 11.

He dismissed Patel's application for a permanent stay.

Topics:  crime, jayant patel, manslaughter charge, supreme court


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