An Albury magistrate has slammed a former restaurateur for acting as "the victim" over his foul-mouthed abuse of a border checkpoint police officer.
An argumentative Carlos Antoine Saliba repeatedly talked over magistrate Richard Funston when his offensive language charge went before Albury Local Court on Monday.
Despite Saliba's interjections and abrasive behaviour, Mr Funston was willing to show leniency to the 41-year-old.
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Saliba, who complained that he had to shut down his business, the Victor Supper Club on Lincoln Causeway, as a result of the border closures, was initially handed an on-the-spot $500 fine by police at the checkpoint.
The court put that aside, with Mr Funston finding the matter proved before dismissing the charge.
"Stop painting yourself as the victim," he told Saliba, who represented himself in court.
"You pleaded guilty."
The court was told that Saliba was stopped by police at the checkpoint on Wodonga Place during the NSW shutdown of the border last year.
When an officer came to his car, Saliba unleashed his abuse.
"I can do whatever the f ... I want," he said.
"F ... you, I don't have to give you my licence.
"You can't tell me what to do."
Saliba criticised the fact that he had been made to wait at the checkpoint for 45 minutes.
He said the officer involved tried to get him out of his car, had no understanding of the nature of the single Albury-Wodonga community and did not even know of his home suburb of Glenroy.
"I lost my business," Saliba said.
Mr Funston said it had to be accepted that Saliba "behaved poorly" on the day, but he was willing to dismiss the charge because of his guilty plea and his extenuating circumstances.
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