Dakin on bench at court circuit
FORMER police officer and Ballina lawyer Michael Dakin this week started as a magistrate on the Tweed-Byron local court circuit.
Magistrate Dakin, who was appointed in March last year, was the subject of complaints from local solicitors some months ago who were concerned about a perception of bias because of his years in private practice in Ballina.
But NSW Chief Magistrate Graeme Henson declared at the time he had full faith in the appointment.
Magistrate Robyn Denes, who was appointed full-time in August last year, is filling in for Jeffrey Linden while he is away on long-term sick leave.
Magistrate Denes has worked as a lawyer in Sydney and a crown prosecutor in the UK.
She was appointed as a part-time magistrate in 2006.
Nicholas Reimer is the relieving magistrate for the North Coast region until he retires next March.