Notorious Perth bikie Troy Mercanti, who has spent nine months behind bars on remand for a string of assault charges against his former partner Tammy Kingdon, was granted home detention bail on the condition his proposed residence is deemed suitable.
Justice John McKechnie this afternoon approved Mr Mercanti’s bail application and ordered an urgent home detention assessment of an address in Henley Brook where he proposes to live.
The judge rejected a call for the Finks bikie to be granted home detention bail at his Duncraig home, where his 17-year-old daughter still lives, as two prosecution witnesses live next door.
If the home detention report on the Henley Brook property is favourable, Mr Mercanti will be released on bail under strict conditions including a ban on taking illicit drugs, submitting to drug testing, no indirect or direct contact with civilian prosecution witnesses, gang members or nominees and surrendering his passport.
Justice McKechnie said although the charges were serious, they were not in the category that justified an automatic refusal of bail if the protection of witnesses could be ensured and suitable bail conditions could be imposed on the accused.
He said while Mr Mercanti had a poor criminal record, his history in complying with bail, including home detention bail, was good.
“His (criminal) record speaks for itself, he has no regard for the norms of society,” Justice McKechnie said.
The bikie, who is awaiting trial in the District Court on the assault matters after pleading not guilty last month, appeared in court today via video from Hakea Prison.
A Perth magistrate refused Mr Mercanti bail in February. However the Director of Public Prosecutions did not oppose home detention bail, with prosecutor Justin Whalley saying it should be at the Henley Brook address if appropriate because the two Duncraig witnesses would be “horrified” that Mr Mercanti had been released to live next door to them.
The court was told police had no issues with Mr Mercanti living at the Henley Brook address on home detention bail.
In court today, Mr Mercanti’s lawyer Peter Morrissey said his client had no knowledge of Ms Kingdon’s whereabouts and she was “out of his world” after the couple had separated following a long relationship.
Mr Morrissey said Mr Mercanti hoped to find work while on bail and was undertaking the slow and painstaking process of re-establishing contact with his two sons.
Mr Mercanti will appear in the District Court next month for a trial listing hearing.