An Australian man has been jailed for addressing a magistrate as “mate”.
Thomas John Collins was locked up after twice calling Magistrate Matthew McLaughlin “mate” during a hearing in Ipswich, Queensland. When Magistrate McLaughlin objected and ordered Collins to address him as “sir” or “your honour’’, he replied: “OK mate”, reports the Courier Mail. That was the final straw which resulted in Collins being sent for a stint in the cells. He later returned to the courtroom to apologise. The incident outraged one local politician who is calling for all Queensland magistrates to attend anger management classes. Ipswich councillor Paul Tully said there was nothing “more Australian than calling someone ‘mate’” and it was hard to believe someone could be locked up for using the word. “It is getting out of control….I say to every magistrate – ‘Come on mate, get off your high horse and show some tolerance’.”