A Queensland carpenter who waged a social media war against a building inspector, including making remarks about the man’s wife, has been sentenced to prison.
Marinus Hendrikus van Uden was handed a three-month jail term after a year-long battle in the Brisbane District Court initiated by the Queensland Building and Construction Commission.
On September 27, 2019, the QBCC received a complaint about defective work done by Mr van Uden. An inspector, Ross Blumel, was sent to the site in January 2020.
Mr Blumel examined Mr van Uden’s work at the property in Palmwoods, on the Sunshine Coast, with the owners present.
According to court documents, Mr Blumel said that during the inspection, Mr van Uden became aggressive towards him and the property owners.
In response to issuing Mr van Uden a notice to rectify his work, Mr Blumel said the carpenter sent him a text message calling him “a liar and corrupt” and a “dirty bastard”.
In further correspondence with another QBCC officer – identified only as Ms White – Mr van Uden said she was accountable for “corruption activities”, and he made particular mention of Mr Blumel’s wife and the fact that she had worked for the government, according to court documents.
In the following days, “inflammatory and voluminous” statements about the QBCC, Mr Blumel and Ms White appeared on social media accounts, with copies of those posts spanning 277 pages.
In addition, Mr van Uden wrote in an email: “Ross [Mr Blumel] [has been] doing this for the last 12 years – two inspections a day, 250 days a year, 12 years active, for something he is not licensed for … 6000 inspections … a penalty for $2500 each, he is guilty … of $15 million [in] corrupt reports.”