`Bogan' burned in bid for TV fame

A GEORGE Town drink-driver who fancied himself "Australia's Biggest Bogan" burnt his hand while torching his car for the Housos film crew, a court has heard.

Housos is a satirical TV series based in a fictional public housing community.

Craig Anthony Brown, 50, pleaded guilty in the Launceston Magistrates Court yesterday to drink-driving, using an unregistered and uninsured motor vehicle, and committing a nuisance.

Magistrate Simon Brown condemned Brown's stunt as "incredibly stupid" and as a waste of emergency services' time and resources.

He convicted Brown, fined him $2000 and disqualified him from driving for two years and six months.

Earlier, police prosecutor Konrad Plachta told the court that Brown drove his car on to a reserve area, where a crowd of more than 100 people had gathered at the intersection of Anne and Davies streets at George Town.

Mr Plachta said a television crew was filming at the time, on September 30 at 2.25pm.

Brown got out of his car, yelled at the film crew and used an accelerant to set fire to the interior of his car.

He continued to yell abuse, and onlookers filmed the scene with their phone cameras.

The authorities were called and firefighters extinguished the blaze.

Police found that Brown had a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.185.

Defence solicitor Fabiano Cangelosi said producers of the SBS television show Housos had approached Brown in the street several days earlier and asked him if he could appear in an episode of Australia's Biggest Bogan.

Mr Cangelosi said that Brown thought it was a good idea and he agreed, with the producers, to do what he eventually did.

"Mr Brown, having watched the program before, knew the kinds of things they would like to film," he said.

Mr Cangelosi said his client used petrol to torch his car, but ended up severely burning his hand. He said that this served as a reminder of the stupidity of his actions and his desire for his "final minutes of fame".

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