A Lismore man has faced Grafton Local Court after pleading guilty to attempting to pervert the course of justice.
A Lismore man has faced Grafton Local Court after pleading guilty to attempting to pervert the course of justice.

False statutory declaration lands man in jail

A LISMORE man has been jailed for at least 12 months after pleading guilty to perverting the course of justice when he made another man pressure the victim of an aggravated break and enter to sign a false statutory declaration.

Daniel Gordon Johnson, 42, appeared in Grafton Local Court on Monday where he was sentenced overacting with intent to pervert the course of justice and a number of other charges, including possessing a prohibited weapon and resisting arrest.

According to police facts, on August 30, 2017, Johnson was charged over an alleged aggravated break and enter at a Ballina caravan park, and was in custody for the offences until May 9, 2018.

The victim provided a statement to police which detailed how an unknown person attended his home on numerous occasions in an attempt to make the victim sign a statutory declaration to reduce the involvement of Johnson.

On May 3, 2018, police obtained a warrant for the jail calls between Johnson and the second male, which revealed Johnson made a total of 43 calls, urging the man to pressure the victim into signing the statutory declaration to get him out of jail.

A month later on July 13, police attached to the Richmond Target Action Group and Lismore Police attended an address in Lismore and arrested Johnson, where he was discovered to be in possession of a Taser and methamphetamine.

After receiving bail on November 29, 2018, for those offences, Johnson was on strict conditions to attend a rehabilitation program in Sydney, but on December 28 Grafton Police noticed a driver acting suspiciously.

Police stopped the car and spoke to the driver and Johnson, who was in the front passenger seat. After giving police false details, the vehicle and occupants were searched. Johnson attempted to flee on foot and wrestled with police before he was taken into custody.

Magistrate Karen Stafford said making calls from prison with the goal to pressure a victim into making a false statutory declaration flew in the face of the criminal justice system.

Johnson was sentenced to 18 months' jail, with a non-parole period of 12 months.