Banks' mudslinger: 'I did it, but I'm not guilty'

By Rob Kidd

John Banks was attacked with a bucket of mud as he arrived at the High Court in Auckland. Photo / Brett Phibbs
John Banks was attacked with a bucket of mud as he arrived at the High Court in Auckland. Photo / Brett Phibbs

A serial protester, who allegedly threw manure at John Banks, has admitted his actions in court but pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Castislav 'Sam' Bracanov, 78, faces a charge of common assault after being accused of throwing the bucket load of sloppy, brown substance at the former Act MP as he walked into the High Court at Auckland in May.

The manure hit him on the arm and face.

Bracanov appeared in Auckland District Court this afternoon, representing himself, and was typically outspoken.

"Oh yeah, I did it," he told Judge Grant Fraser.

"It wasn't much. It was a bit of horse manure."

But when asked to enter a plea moments later, Bracanov changed his tune.

"I'm not guilty. I protect New Zealand people not to behave like sheep," he said.

Judge Fraser asked him how he was planning to defend the charge.

"What I did was right - that's my defence," Bracanov said.

"It's not assault, it's revenge."

He told the court he had been waiting 22 years for vengeance, claiming Banks had offended him during a talk-back radio show.

Since his vendetta had been carried out, Bracanov said there was no more animosity from him towards the politician.

"I like the man. I've met him and he's good," he said.

The start of Banks' trial on a charge of knowingly filing a false election return, was delayed by 90 minutes while he returned home and changed his suit.

He was later found guilty on one charge and was sentenced to 100 hours community work and two months community detention.

That sentence was put on hold since Banks appealed the ruling, claiming to have new evidence that would clear him of guilt.

The appeal will be heard in Wellington at the end of October.

Bracanov was remanded on bail and will be back before the court in December.

- APNZ

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on red akl_a1 at 02 Oct 2014 11:30:08 Processing Time: 989ms