SA bikie boss seeks to overturn conviction


A former bikie gang boss has been left with just "a piece of paper and a pencil" as he tries to argue his own appeal against convictions for ordering disciplinary action against other gang members.

Honar Pishdari appeared in the South Australian Court of Criminal appeal on Wednesday representing himself and asked for extra time to prepare the basis of his argument.

He said his situation was difficult because he had been placed in isolation in jail.

"All I have access to is a piece of paper and a pencil," Pishdari told Justice David Lovell.

The former SA Nomads president was found guilty of two counts of participating in a criminal organisation, and with aggravated kidnapping and blackmail in relation to the action he ordered other gang members carry out.

In one incident, Pishdari ordered action be taken against a gang member who had asked for protection from authorities while in jail, something the gang viewed as reprehensible and a sign of weakness.

In May, he was sentenced to a minimum of 16 years behind bars, a term he also wants reduced.

Sentencing Pishdari and other gang members, Justice David Peek said their actions were outrageous and tantamount to those of a paramilitary organisation.

But Pishdari told the appeal court that the judge failed to direct the jury that it would be dangerous to convict on the basis of specific testimony which he said was not corroborated.

Justice Lovell agreed to a four-week adjournment but told him he would need to argue his appeal on the next occasion, regardless of his circumstances and whether or not he had been able to engage new counsel.

Pishdari said he did not want to waste the court's time, but did not know how long he would remain in isolation.

The hearing was adjourned until later this month.