Bus company operator caught with illegal police radar
"IF it's an offence to have it in the car then I'm guilty, but I wasn't using it."
A bus company operator who was caught with a $1000 radar detector this week told an Ipswich court he did not know it was illegal to have one of the devices.
John Michael Musso, 54, from Kangaroo Point, pleaded guilty to using a radar detection equipment in his Landcruiser on November 4 near Peak Crossing.
Musso, the operator of Fassifern Coaches, told Ipswich Magistrates Court the device had not been switched on when he was caught speeding by police.
Prosecutor Sergeant Paul Caldwell said it was 9.45am when police travelling on Ipswich-Boonah Road saw the device attached to the windscreen of a Toyota Landcruiser that was travelling in the opposite direction.
Police did a u-turn and caught up with Musso's vehicle, getting him to pull over.
Sgt Caldwell said police noticed the device had been pulled off the windscreen by the time they pulled Musso over, with just the suction cups remaining.
When the driver was asked what happened to it, Musso produced a Redline radar laser detector, which Sgt Caldwell said was a device intended to detect the use of police radar guns.
Musso told police he had bought it for about $1000 from a Brisbane supplier.
The court heard Musso said the device was not intended for radar detection but as a "proximity warning".
Sgt Caldwell said a front seat passenger in the Landcruiser told the officer the alarm "didn't even go off", as they approached the police car.
Sgt Caldwell said police sought the forfeiture of the device.
Magistrate David Shepherd questioned the legal basis for the police request for forfeiture, prompting Sgt Caldwell say police wanted to appropriate the device for testing and training.
Musso told the court: "If it is illegal to have it in the car I was not aware. I thought it was legal to use".
Mr Shepherd said it was not illegal to own one of the devices, despite the fact it was illegal to use it in the way Musso did.
He said it was for that reason that he would not order the forfeiture of the device.
Musso was fined $200 for the offence.