VIDEO: Bell pleads “not guilty”

COURT APPEARANCE: Independent Member for Mount Gambier stands outside court after pleading not guilty to 26 serious theft charges. Picture: SANDRA MORELLO

READ MORE: Theft charges raise alarm bells for Troy
READ MORE: Voter support rings in for Bell
READ MORE: Community backs Bell
READ MORE: Bell stands defiant
READ MORE: Bell excused from hearing
INDEPENDENT Member for Mount Gambier Troy Bell has pleaded not guilty to 26 charges relating to the theft of more than $2 million in court today.

Facing 20 counts of theft and six of dishonestly dealing with documents, Mr Bell, 47, entered the dock in court – for the first time since his re-election – just before 3pm to begin proceedings.

Local Magistrate Teresa Anderson asked defence counsel Heidi Hancock if it was conceded there was a case to answer.

“It would appear there is a case to answer and I have written instructions that there will be ‘not guilty’ pleas entered to each charge,” Ms Hancock said.

For the following few minutes, the court heard Mr Bell calmly announce “not guilty” to each of the 26 charges as they were read to the court.

After the ‘not guilty’ pleas were entered, Magistrate Anderson committed Mr Bell to stand trial in the Mount Gambier District Court.

The arraignment date was set for October 9.

It is unclear how long it will take for Mr Bell’s case to reach trial due to backlogs and the fact the district court only sits in Mount Gambier three times a year for four weeks.

Leave a Reply