Judge ‘assault and abuse’ case to hear 14 witnesses

Ethan James |

Justice Gregory Geason has dialled in to court for his assault and abuse case.
Justice Gregory Geason has dialled in to court for his assault and abuse case.

More than a dozen witnesses are expected to give evidence in the court hearing for a Supreme Court judge accused of assault and emotional abuse.

Tasmanian Justice Gregory Geason, who was charged in December, dialled in to Hobart Magistrates Court by phone on Wednesday when his case was mentioned. 

Geason has previously pleaded not guilty to one count of emotional abuse or intimidation and one count of common assault.

Crown prosecutor Neill Hutton leaves court
Crown prosecutor Neill Hutton said 14 witnesses would likely be called at Geason’s hearing. (Ethan James/AAP PHOTOS)

He is accused of assaulting a person on October 31 by grabbing their arms and squeezing, shaking them and striking them with his hand.

He is also accused of emotionally abusing and intimidating a person between April and November, including by tracking their movements.

Crown prosecutor Neill Hutton said 14 witnesses would likely be called at the hearing, scheduled to begin on July 15 and run for five days.

Geason’s lawyer Fabiano Cangelosi said he was hopeful of receiving an expert opinion report about an aspect of the prosecution case in the next four weeks. 

Mr Cangelosi said he was arranging to view devices containing contemporaneous notes made by Geason. 

The court has previously been told Geason made notes during the “unfolding of events” in the contemplation there might be legal proceedings.

Supreme Court of Tasmania Justice Gregory Geason (file image)
Gregory Geason has undertaken not to exercise a judge’s powers while his criminal case continues. (Ethan James/AAP PHOTOS)

Mr Cangelosi flagged the possibility of applying to adjourn the hearing at the next administrative listing on July 5 if preparations aren’t on track. 

Magistrate Jackie Hartnett said the appointment of an interstate magistrate for the hearing had yet to occur.

Geason, whose bail was continued, took leave from his position in November.

He has given a written undertaking he will not seek or attempt to exercise the powers of a judge of the Supreme Court of Tasmania while criminal proceedings are ongoing. 

Among allegations, Geason is accused of coercing a person into establishing a shared phone account to gain access to their electronic records.

It is also alleged he subjected the person to verbal abuse, made remarks about their professional and personal life, and persistently yelled and screamed.

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