Dr Valerie Peers: Melbourne doctor suspended over alleged dodgy Covid exemptions seeking jury trial

A doctor suspended amid allegations she was handing out dodgy vaccine exemptions plans to take her fight in front of a jury after claiming her court case is an “abuse of process”.

Dr Valerie Jean Peers returned before the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday, where she asked for her case to be sent to the County Court.

She told Magistrate Peter Reardon she’d attended nine previous hearings with “nothing achieved” and alleged past magistrates had been colluding with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency.

“There’s evidence of collusion, there’s no doubt of that,” she said.

“I want to go forward because I’ve not had my case heard here. I believe I have a good case and the prosecution has an unfair and biased case.”

She told the court she hoped there were “better judges” in the County Court, saying she had been denied “natural justice” and been treated unfairly in the jurisdiction.

“I’ve experienced so much bias here … What hope does a defendant have, it’s hopeless,” she said.

“It’s an abuse of process, I’ve asked for this many times.”

After Mr Reardon responded saying this was the first time the case was before him and he had no knowledge of her past court appearances, Dr Peers retorted: “You can’t deny my experience”.

The general practitioner had her registration suspended in November 2021 as the health watchdog probed allegations she was providing Covid vaccination exemptions without clinical reason.

She was later charged with seven offences in April 2023 after allegedly continuing to practise medicine out of a Altona North clinic on dates between November 2021 and May 2022.

The court was told it would take the health watchdog about a week to prepare the brief of evidence against Dr Peers.

Mr Reardon adjourned the case until May, telling Dr Peers when she next returned to court it could be set down for a committal hearing where a magistrate would decide if there is sufficient evidence to warrant the case to be listed for a trial.

According to the AHPRA website, Dr Peers remains suspended and is prohibited from working as a medical practitioner in Australia.

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