THE Queensland court of appeal has reserved its decision on a Cairns charter pilot who is appealing against his conviction for the sexual assault of a teenage girl in Papua New Guinea.
Frederic Arthur Martens, 60, was sentenced to five years’ jail by a Queensland court in October 2006 over the 2001 sexual assault of the 14-year-old girl.
In April, Australian attorney-general Robert McClelland ordered the case be referred to the Queensland court of appeal after new evidence came to light and Martens was granted bail by the court.
The claim revolved around an affidavit from a family member of the girl that the teenager told her in November 2003 she had been pressured to make up the allegation by Martens’ former partner Jenny Kosa.
Yesterday, the court of appeal in Brisbane heard evidence from Martens’ defence team regarding flight destination invoices from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority, which it claims provides an alibi for Martens.
Martens’ defence barrister Michael Sumner-Potts argued the invoices verified his client’s flight log book, which he said the jury was told to give no weight to during the 2006 trial.
However, prosecutor James Henry, SC, told the court the invoices were only a record of a flight’s movements and not those of an individual pilot.
He also disputed the evidence on the basis that Martens had the capacity to use it, and should have used it, during his 2006 trial.
Henry told the court that if Martens’ appeal was upheld, he would like a retrial.
However, Justice Hugh Fraser said that would lead to a “never-ending circle”.
The decision was reserved. – AAP