Mehajer’s diagnosis revealed
SALIM Mehajer has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder and has promised to be treated by a doctor if he succeeds in an appeal to be out of prison on bail before Christmas.
Salim Mehajer looked tanned and muscular as he appeared via video from jail in the NSW Supreme Court.
Mehajer, whose father Mohamed was in the court, is applying for bail to appeal a conviction on electoral fraud.
His defence counsel Michael Finnane, QC, told Justice David Davies that Mehjaer had been diagnosed with bipolar disorder but it was uncertain how far the illness went back.
"This man has a diagnosable mental illness," Mr Finnane said.
"He needs to have it treated.
"There is no indication how far back this mental illness commenced.
"It can start as a teenager, it can start later in life."
Mr Finnane presented a letter from a GP, who is Salim Mehajer's brother in law. But another doctor, a forensic psychiatrist, had diagnosed Mehajer with bipolar disorder.
Mr Finane said that Mr Mehajer took responsibility for some matters he had been charged with, but he also did not accept responsibility for a large number of the charges.
"He actually has not been convicted of very much at all... and some of it traffic matters," Mr Finnane said.
Mehajer has spent the last five months in Cooma Correctional Centre, the former 19th century mental institution and current prison where Roxy Jacenko's husband Oliver Curtis served his year-long sentence for insider trading.
The incarcerated property developer is currently in the jail typically used to house crooked police, paedophiles, and high-profile inmates who require protection from other inmates.
Mehajer has been serving a minimum 11-month sentence for election fraud.
The former Auburn deputy mayor was jailed in June.
Mr Finnane said Mehajer was a bankrupt, but intended to apply to have his bankruptcy annulled.
Mehajer also "owes a large sum of money to the Commissioner of Taxation which he intends ti challenge".
Mr Finnane said Mehajer was not a flight risk overseas because "his life is here".
Earlier this year, Mehajer pleaded guilty to assault occasioning actual bodily harm and destroying the iPhone 7 of a woman who filmed him outside Sydney's Star casino.
In April last year, Mehajer threw an EFTPOS machine at taxi driver Nazir Syed, injuring his nose.
He was given a good behaviour bond and ordered to undergo anger management counselling.
Mehajer is due to appeal his conviction for assault occasioning actual bodily harm against Channel 7 journalist Laura Banks.
On April 2 last year as he was leaving a police station after being charged with the taxi driver assault, Mehajer slammed shut a door on Banks, bruising her hand.
Banks was among a group of journalists waiting outside the police station for Mehajer.
Magistrate Joanne Keogh found Mehajer guilty, but recorded no penalty, saying a "frenzied media pack" displaying "appalling and predatory behaviour" had hunted Mehajer.
From Cooma Correctional Centre Mehajer in August, he stated that he would be moving from the Snow Mountains jail back to Silverwater Correctional Centre in western Sydney.
In April this year, he was granted bail on unconnected charges relating to an allegedly staged car crash last October.
The crash happened when Mehajer was on his way to court to face a hearing over the casino taxi driver assault.
Police charged Mehajer with perverting the course of justice and conspiring to cheat or defraud, and five co-accused with varying charges stemming from the alleged scam.
Mehajer was refused bail and placed in custody in January over the crash allegations, but in April was granted bail on strict conditions with a $200,000 bond.
More details to come.