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October 29, 2012

Judges often have the difficult task of deciding which witness’s version of events is more credible. It appears that his Honour Justice Pembroke was not troubled by that difficulty in The Old Kiama Wharf Company v Betohuwisa [2011] NSWSC 823. His Honour starts off mildly enough saying at [20]:

It is apparent from what I have already said that I have formed an adverse view of Warwick Colbron’s credibility.

Rather than leaving it at that, his Honour continued:

‘…In many other respects, his evidence was unsatisfactory and contrary to the probabilities. Repeatedly he denied the obvious. Consistently he asserted the improbable. …. His attempt to explain why the transfer of assets from OKW to Betohuwisa was “commercial” was unsatisfactory. That is because there could be no satisfactory explanation. The transaction was, in my view, indefensible….

[21] …..It may be that Warwick Colbron had convinced himself of the rightness of his position through constant consideration, reconstruction and re-affirmation. That I think would be a charitable view. It is not the view that I have reached.”

There’s more if you want to have a look at the judgment. I can only assume that the transcript would be a good read.

Creative commons acknowledgment for the photograph.

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