"He said at the time of the offence, Trikilis's health was poor and he was prescribed a course of anti- depressant medication."
Bigamist in court today for sentence
BY LORETTA JOHNSTON
30 Apr, 2010 12:00 AM
A SOUTHERN Tasmanian man who has admitted forging divorce papers to enable his marriage to another woman will be sentenced in the Hobart Magistrates Court today.
Nicholas Trikilis, 44, of Conningham, has pleaded guilty to five charges relating to forgery, and the rare charge of bigamy.
During his sentencing hearing yesterday, the court heard Trikilis and Kerri Anne Statton separated in 2001 and that a "long and bitter" property settlement followed.
Prosecutor Elizabeth Curtis said neither Trikilis nor Ms Statton had filed for a divorce when Trikilis approached a marriage celebrant in January 2008, asking her to marry him and Katrina May Phillips.
The court heard that on April 18, 2008, Trikilis emailed a marriage celebrant what was later found to be a forged certificate of divorce and that he married Ms Phillips on April 26, 2008, in the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens.
Ms Curtis said Ms Statton became aware of Trikilis's bigamist marriage when she was attending her mother's funeral, after she was alerted to a wedding photograph published in a local newspaper.
The court heard Ms Statton then filed a complaint with the Australian Federal Police.
The prosecution is arguing for a custodial sentence to be imposed on Trikilis but Trikilis's lawyer Craig Mackie said "unusual personal circumstances" had led to the crime being committed and that it was highly unlikely Trikilis would commit a similar offence.
He said at the time of the offence, Trikilis's health was poor and he was prescribed a course of anti- depressant medication.
Mr Mackie also said that while his client and Ms Statton had not officially divorced, they were "for all intents and purposes" divorced.
He said their marriage had been short, there were no children and Trikilis and Ms Statton had no financial ties at the time of the bigamist marriage.
He said Trikilis simply did not want to face the possibility of further court proceedings involving Ms Statton as the property settlement, finalised in 2006, had been "long and bitter".
The court heard Trikilis and Ms Statton obtained a divorce on March 26 this year.
Ms Phillips said she remained in a committed relationship with Trikilis.
"I would be happy to marry him again when these charges are finalised," she said in a statutory declaration.
Magistrate Michael Daly described Trikilis's forgery as "unusual and brazen".