By Dave Higgens, Press Association
Notorious prisoner Charles Bronson praised the British justice system as the “best on the planet” as he complained about appearing in court by video-link as if he had “a part in Star Trek”.
The 65-year-old appeared on a screen at Leeds Crown Court from Frankland Prison, in Co Durham, to face a charge of attempting to cause grievous bodily harm with intent to a deputy prison governor in Wakefield Prison.
When he was asked to enter a plea, Bronson asked to address Judge Guy Kearl QC and said: “I feel I’m only standing here to save money.
“I should be in your courtroom today, as a man, respectful, honourable and facing what I’m facing.
“But talking to you by a TV screen I feel like I’ve got a part in Star Trek. I don’t like it. It’s not me. It’s not justice.”
Dressed in a pale blue T-shirt and grey tracksuit bottoms and wearing glasses, he said: “I still believe British justice is the best on the planet and that’s coming from a man who’s been in prison all his life.
“People like yourself, I think you’re doing this country a dishonour.
“You should have had me in that court room today so I could travel – look out of the prison van at the all the countryside, the animals, the people and buildings.
“You’ve denied me that today and you should be ashamed of yourself.”
As he began his address to the court, Bronson said in his distinctive south-east England accent: “I’ve been locked up in prison for four-and-a-half decades.
“I’ve never used a computer. The last time I had a mobile phone it was as big as a house brick.
“I’m not used to all this technology. I don’t like it. It makes me feel uncomfortable. I’m an old fashioned prisoner.”
Bronson appeared in court under the name Charles Salvador and, when asked his full name in court, he said: “Charles Arthur Salvador, Born Again Artist.”
When asked to repeat it, he said the same name again.
And when asked his nationality by the court clerk, he said: “I’m English” and shook his first.
After discussion between lawyers and the judge during the 10-minute hearing, Bronson looked at his watch and said: “Come on – it’s nearly dinner time. It’s fish and chips today.”
Judge Kearl told him he would be remanded in custody and would go on trial in Leeds on November 12.
Bronson, who declined an invitation from the judge to sit during the hearing and was accompanied by three uniformed prison officers, replied: “Thank you, your honour.
“That’s a lovely wig you’ve got on there. Do they do them in black?”
Bronson is accused of attempting to cause grievous bodily harm with intent to Mark Doherty on January 25 this year.
He did not enter a plea and will appear again for a hearing at the same court on September 24.