Defence attache cleared

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by jonwilly, Jan 25, 2006.

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  1. January 25, 2006

    Abusive colonel to blame for 'berserk on flight' trial
    By Adam Fresco

    AN ARMY colonel who was cleared yesterday of going “berserk” on a flight home from Thailand after drinking alcohol was told that he had brought the prosecution on himself.

    Peter Roberts, 51, the British defence attaché in Thailand, was accused of hurling abuse at other passengers and threatening to kill cabin staff, and had to have his wrists and ankles bound to restrain him, Isleworth Crown Court, in West London, was told.

    When the colonel’s defence team made an application for costs after the jury returned its not-guilty verdict, the judge refused, saying that the defendant had consumed an excessive amount of alcohol.

    Judge Usha Karu said: “I took a view when I heard the evidence that the defendant had consumed alcohol to an extent which was excessive and, having done so knowing he was also on antidepressants, he brought the matter on himself.”

    The judge clarified her remarks, saying that Colonel Roberts had suffered adverse effects on a previous occasion when taking alcohol with his prescription drug. His defence costs are expected to run into thousands of pounds.

    Colonel Roberts was returning from a fact-finding trip to the scene of the tsunami in Thailand when he is said to have started swearing at other passengers. In one mid-air tirade about Thailand, the colonel, who is a Thai speaker, was said to have yelled: “F*** this country, f*** the King, f*** Buddha.”

    His solicitor, Look Chih Wang, issued a statement on his behalf and said that he wanted to apologise to all those who were “affected by his behaviour and offended by his remarks”.

    Mr Wang said: “Colonel Roberts has been found not guilty of this offence because he was not in fact drunk. His behaviour was due to a temporary abnormality of function caused by long-term chronic stress, tsunami-related post-traumatic stress, sleep deprivation and a combination of the antidepressant Seroxat and alcohol.

    The Ministry of Defence said that Colonel Roberts, of Passfield, Hampshire, would continue in his post.

    The colonel told the court that his Thai doctor had not told him to avoid mixing Seroxat with alcohol. He had witnessed harrowing scenes after the tsunami that had caused him to suffer from flashbacks.

    Now if PTP hadn't banned the story way back when. John could have told what has taken months to cum out in UK.
  2. One rule for them and one for the Other Ranks
  3. What Regiment (or, as is more likely: Corps) was this tw@?

    Despite the 'verdict' (someone smiling on him from above, Methinks), the man's a bloody disgrace. How does one get to the rank of Colonel and not know that drugs and alcohol don't mix?

  4. It has been common knowledge that he was under Medication for a medical condition.
    I am surprised the matter ever went to court.
  5. So he was forced to get drunk then, and not responsible for his actions ??
  6. It was a civvi court that cleared him not a military one.

    One thing is sure, he wont be going back to Thailand after making those comments about King Bumipol
  7. I used to be a serious drinker when I was younger.
    Can anyone tell how drink is going to effect them.
    The Tusnami had a dramatic effect on folks out here. The Brit Embassy and personel where heavily involved. Understaffed and grossly over tasked.
    I know the young Brit who's job it is to do the paperwork and liase with relatives and like troops who have seen action, he does not, will not, talk about what he saw and did.
    Many where involved in hours, days, weeks, months of identifing bodies and compassionate work.
    Anyone who has had exstensive service will know about the problems.
    Never had the night time visits of what YOU'VE SEEN ?
    He's ex RA.
  8. Whoops! just re read the above posts and noted that he is going to go back. Given the Thai sensitivities about their King and Buddha I find this somewhat surprising, but who am I to judge.

    This was reported in the papers at the time that it happened and to be fair to the Mods, there is a convention that posts are not welcome on specific matters before and during a trial.
  9. Isn't he AAC ?
  10. Yes he is AAC. And he also one of the nicest blokes you are ever likely to meet. This was completely out of character.
  11. Mushroom as you know Les Majesty is a very serious offence here.
    HM is a very tolerante Head of State, where this country would be without him I doubt anyone could say.
    The crime has only been enforced against politicians and in most of thoes cases The King has passed comment the He understood the real meaning of what was said.
    Then Again
    Any Frang passing comment like that would have to be mentally disturbed or
    I cannot see him coming back, he would be cut dead by Thai citizens medical problems and all.
  12. That's as maybe. However:

    - Did he bring the name of the Army into disrepute?
    - Was he aware of the consequences of his actions (i.e. getting himself lagered up whilst brimming with anti depressants (FFS)).
    - Was he a tad over excited by his 'status'.

    etc etc. This is a sure fire example of the choice of two honourable options to mitigate his disgraceful behaviour:
    1) The Mess Webley. 2) PVR.

    ...or on the other hand a posting to Middle Wallop as Section Storeman!
  13. All very good John but I'll bet he was not the only one who saw nasty scenes or drank alcohol. Why aren't they all running around slagging off the King and Budda. Besides it appears he was aware that alcohol affected him whilst on drugs (there's a surprise) so he showed little constraint.

    I wonder how a military court would have dealt with an NCO in similar circumstances?
  14. Sorry JW , it was the usual rules about ongoing or pending cases, but yes you did spot it.

    As for saying F-word the King , I thought that was as good as asking for the Mess Webley in Thailand?
  15. Judge Usha Karu said: “I took a view when I heard the evidence that the defendant had consumed alcohol to an extent which was excessive and, having done so knowing he was also on antidepressants, he brought the matter on himself.”
    About says it all really,any posts on trauma etc are abit lame,with rank goeth responsibilities which means you do not behave like some drunken chav on holiday.
    A dammed disgrace.