THE curious case of the eastern snake-necked turtle and its alleged owner - Swan Point's Sven Olaf Wiener - is finally over.
Yesterday Launceston Magistrate Tim Hill took just minutes to dismiss a case that's dragged on for more than three years involving the Tasmanian Senate candidate.
Mr Hill ruled the evidence - namely the turtle - was inadmissable and dropped one count of possessing a restricted animal.
Mr Wiener, a Senator Online candidate in the federal election, was charged after police seized the turtle from his home in July 2010.
The search, prompted by a fraud allegation, instead unearthed the Chelodina lonicollis as the turtle is formally known.
When officers had arrived at the residence nobody was home.
The home was searched after the driver of wagon coming towards them ``got out and ran into the bushes''.
Mr Wiener pleaded not guilty, arguing the search warrant was invalid and the turtle was inadmissible.
Mr Hill noted that the matter had been ``unduly protracted''.
The first hearing was adjourned because Mr Wiener, representing himself, had injured his hands and could not make notes.
In September 2011 the hearing began in his absence and had to be restarted when he arrived 20 minutes later.
In December that year Mr Wiener applied to have the hearing adjourned three times, arguing that the medication he took for a migraine whenever a low-pressure system loomed was affecting his ability to concentrate.
``A large amount of court time was also taken up with discussion and exchanges between the defendant and I,'' Mr Hill said yesterday.
Submissions by Mr Wiener were lengthy and generally irrelevant, containing comments of an ``intemperate and inappropriate nature'', which he would not permit in open court.
But he found the police did not have reasonable grounds to search Mr Wiener's home.
``I have formed the view that in this particular case the undesirability of admitting the evidence does outweigh the desirability of admitting it,'' Mr Hill said.