News

Sick celebrity lawyer given slap down by Noosa court

Harrison Ford's lawyer Stuart Gibson loses case involving a Noosa magistrate.
Harrison Ford's lawyer Stuart Gibson loses case involving a Noosa magistrate. Jordan Strauss

THE Hollywood defamation lawyer to stars like Russell Crowe and Harrison Ford didn't like his verbal shellacking from a Noosa magistrate who didn't simply accept his sick note.

Stuart Gibson was told off when he didn't appear in a Queensland Civil and Administrative Tribunal (QCAT) matter over a dispute of $14,000 in real estate sales commission with Select Noosa Real Estate on February 12.

So Mr Gibson, who was also known as the "Church of Scientology lawyer", fired back and sought leave to appeal the QCAT decision.

He also accused the tribunal member of "bias" and sought to have her recused from hearing the case after he was told, amongst others, "the court is not at your beck and call".

Mr Gibson claimed in his grounds of appeal the "tribunal snapped at him in open court, acted rudely and abrasively, attacked his credibility and defamed him before hanging up (the phone) on him.

But in a judgement handed down in Brisbane by former Chief Justice Tim Carmody, Mr Gibson lost this bid and his leave to appeal was refused.

The court documents, released this week, highlight details of the unusual case.

Mr Gibson and his elderly parents, Walter and Helen, were alleged to owe Select Noosa Real Estate the $14,053 over the $545,000 sale of their 44 Second Ave, Coolum Beach home in April 2015.

PRDnationwide sold the home, but Select Noosa Real Estate argued they had the exclusive listing.

The case was set down for February 12. Mr Gibson, who works in Melbourne, was given permission to represent his elderly parents over the phone.

But then on February 11, Mr Gibson emailed the tribunal advising "he was going home to bed with a virus" and requested an adjournment as he wasn't likely to be well enough to attend the hearing.

The next day, he again emailed the registry confirming he was "still unwell" and asked for it to be adjourned and provide a mobile contact number.

When the hearing was called at 11am, the tribunal rang Mr Gibson's office and was told "he was, or at least had been, in earlier in the morning but had left for the day and was only contactable via email".

The tribunal told Mr Gibson's office manager the hearing would proceed if he didn't make contact promptly.

At 11.10am, the matter was adjourned, but "because of credibility issues" withdrew Mr Gibson's leave to represent his parents by phone and ordered them to all appear in court.

Two minutes later and Mr Gibson was on the phone to the tribunal, which sparked a retort.

"I'm in the middle of a court. You were meant to appear here or be available by 9am," a tribunal member said.

"I rang your offices, they said you were in, but you were in a meeting. Now, I'm not sure - they said that - that may be mistaken etcetera. It hen rang your mobile. I then got messages. This court is not at your beck and call. And to be honest, I think you are just trying to delay these proceedings."

The court document showed the tribunal also noted Mr Gibson's "alleged pattern of not showing up at hearings and causing adjournments for various reasons, including being sick and having to attend to other court-related matters".

It also alleged "he did not sound sick when contacted by the court".

Judge Carmody found Mr Gibson and his parents didn't have "a right to appear remotely" and the tribunal was "perfectly entitled to reconsider the question of the mode of the applicant's attendance at the adjournment hearing, especially if credit was in issue".

He also found the tribunal's comments "clearly reflected scepticism" about Mr Gibson's reasons for non-attendance, but did not defame him.

It is understood the case is now set down for a date in November.

Both Mr Gibson and Select Noosa Real Estate principal Greg Smith declined to comment.

Topics:  defamation editors picks harrison ford noosa magistrates court qcat russell crowe tim carmody


Stay Connected

Update your news preferences and get the latest news delivered to your inbox.

Man cut from ute at Stanthorpe

TRAPPED: Emergency services free an injured man from his ute after a collision at Stanthorpe.

Nundubbemere man suffers life-threatening injuries

Person trapped after car crash in Stanthorpe

TRAPPED: Crews are working to free the person who remains stuck in the vehicle.

Crews are responding to two-vehicle crash

Town Hall toilets to take final flush

FINAL FLUSH: Southern Downs Regional Council have moved to demolish the public toilets in the Warwick Town Hall car park.

SDRC move to dump facility

Local Partners

Gremlins face tough Tenterfield side

In this weekend's round of BRL, the Stanthorpe Gremlins took on the Tenterfield Tigers at Sullivan Oval, losing to Tenterfield 24-36.

What to expect at Birds of Tokyo's Ipswich gig

The band will perform at the Racehorse Hotel on Friday.

BAND member Glen Sarangapany talks music, pub grub and doing shoeys

What public holidays are left in 2017

Ipswich residents will get the day off tomorrow for the show.

IPSWICH residents will get tomorrow off for the show

Caitlyn comes home to launch debut album

Gympie's Caitlyn Shadbolt will launch here debut album Songs On My Sleeve at an exclusive all-ages concert in Gympie on Friday, May 26.

Win tickets to Caitlyn's album launch

Shot at the live shows slips through Sally's fingers

SUNSHINE Coast singer's dramatic elimination from The Voice nearly saw her form a duo with her battle round opponent.

Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor split after 17 years

They were married in May 2000 and have two children, who they said will remain their priority.

Ben Stiller and his wife Christine Taylor have called it a day

Why The Voice hasn't produced a star

Boy George responds to Brittania Clifford-Pugh's heart-warming message.

It's the industry, not the show, says Boy George

These actors hated their movies and didn’t mind admitting it

Channing Tatum and Marlon Wayans in a scene from GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra.

Every year, Hollywood blesses us with plenty of God awful movies.

Miranda Kerr and fiance hang up backyard tent for wedding

The decorators and caterers are arriving for the final preparations for the wedding of Miranda Kerr and Evan Spiegel. Pictures: Splash

Evan Spiegel and Miranda Kerr are set to marry today

Book review: Mia Freedman's book meets her critics head on

I appreciated Freedman's blunt honesty in the book

Man's amazing comeback from monster crisis

Pat O'Driscoll agents Penny Keating and Doug Webber sold 56 Agnes St, The Range at auction over the weekend.

NOT long ago, he sold his possessions to pay staff. Now he's back.

Report reveals progress on $319m airport upgrade

Aerials of the Sunshine Coast.Jetstar plane in front of the Susnhine Coast terminal, Sunshine Coast Airport.

Over two dozen government approvals needed for airport expansion

Lost dough leaves sour taste after company collapse

Kathleen and John Mahoney from Sugar and Spice Bakery were stung after the collapse of Cantro Pty Ltd and are still owed money.

Supermarket operator collapse leaves sour taste for bakery

Open for inspection homes May 25-31

Check out this weekend's homes open for inspection

How Toowoomba house prices compare in Australia

For sale sign in front of home.

Here's what $700,000 will buy you in Toowoomba, Brisbane and Sydney

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!