Self-help guru admits NYE attack on wife

By Sophie Tarr

A former Hillsong preacher arrived on his estranged wife's doorstep drunk and grabbed her "by the neck" after learning she had green-lit a New Year's Eve party at their home, court documents reveal.

Pat "Pasquale" Mesiti pleaded guilty to one count of common assault on Monday, two months after the attack on his wife Andrea in her northwest Sydney home.

Prosecutors have agreed to drop a more serious charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

A fact sheet tendered in Parramatta Local Court states Mesiti and his wife have been married for 13 years but are now in the final stages of divorce, having separated last April.

Mesiti moved out of the family home in Glenhaven the following month.

The former evangelical preacher, who now lives in Kellyville Ridge in Sydney's Hills district, has penned a number of self-help books including Staying Together Without Falling Apart, billed as a definitive guide to helping men and women "thrive together in a modern day relationship".

Documents tendered in Parramatta Local Court suggest the 56-year-old earns $2500 a week on the public speaking circuit.

The documents state Mesiti and his wife were both out separately with friends on December 31 last year when Mesiti saw photos posted on Facebook by a young female relative, showing a party in full swing at the Glenhaven house.

He immediately began calling and texting Mrs Mesiti, warning her he was calling police.

"After arriving home, the accused, being intoxicated, has begun arguing with all the partygoers including (the young relative), demanding them all to get out," the documents state.

"About 10pm the victim has arrived at the home before walking down the driveway and into the front door."

After a heated verbal argument during which Mrs Mesiti defended allowing the party, Mesiti grabbed his wife by the neck.

"A physical altercation has ensued during which the victim has felt an impact to the right side of her head," the documents state.

Police arrived as Mrs Mesiti and the young relative were leaving in tears.

Mesiti will remain out on bail until his sentencing next month but must comply with a 12-month apprehended violence order, which bars him from assaulting or stalking Mrs Mesiti or approaching her within 12 hours of consuming alcohol.

"In a nutshell, that means that you cannot do anything that makes her fear for her safety," Magistrate Karen Stafford told Mesiti on Monday.

"If you have a glass of wine with dinner at 7pm at night, you cannot go and see her until 7am the next morning."

Mesiti did not comment as he left court.

  • National domestic violence helpline: 1800 737 732 or 1800RESPECT. In an emergency call triple-zero.