Oscar-Cavoodle court battle: Owner Mark Gillespie claims he can’t afford to fight Gina Edwards
The man who bought Oscar the Cavoodle has told a court he only gave up custody of the Instagram-famous pooch because he couldn’t afford to fight a decorated attorney who billed himself as a “mummy.” ‘ of the dog.
Mark Gillespie said in federal court on Monday he was still upset at having to give up his beloved pet to Gina Edwards and her husband Ken Flavell in 2021.
He agreed with lawyer Dauid Sibtain that he was under “financial pressure” and unable to continue paying the high legal costs.
“I was very desperate. It was my dog and I loved him,” Mr Gillespie said.
“I was very angry that Mrs Edwards could do this to me.
“I was very upset, angry and missing the part of my family that I had.”
Award-winning pooch Oscar is at the center of a bitter defamation case between Gina Edwards (pictured with Oscar) and Nine Network’s A Current Affair over coverage of a custody battle between Ms Edwards and the dog’s owner and ‘co-parent’ Mark Gillespie
When asked how long that excitement lasted, Mr Gillespie replied: “It still does today.”
Ms Edwards is suing A Current Affair and journalist Steve Marshall for defamation over their coverage of her custody battle with Mr Gillespie in 2021.
Mr Gillespie had bought the dog in 2016 and registered Mr Flavell as second owners, with the trio acting as family for the beloved pet, the court has previously been told.
But in May 2018, Mr Gillespie’s relatives began looking after Oscar at an estate in Wingello in NSW’s Southern Highlands while he was working as a cruise ship director.
He said he told Mr Flavell he was moving Oscar to Wingello because he was going to be working at sea.
“He was upset … I said, ‘Oscar is my dog, he’ll stay with his family,'” Mr Gillespie said.
Gina Edwards (left) with her legal representative, lead defamation attorney Sue Chrysanthou (right)
He said he doesn’t remember the couple telling him he couldn’t bring the dog to Wingello, but noted they were disappointed with his decision.
Mr Gillespie said it was agreed that the couple could continue to see Oscar.
Ms Edwards and Mr Gillespie had a confrontation later in July this year over Oscar’s guardianship agreement, with the court having previously heard evidence from her and Mr Flavell about it.
They both told the court they were concerned that Oscar was not well cared for and was not properly cared for, guided or fed by Mr Gillespie’s brother and sister-in-law at Wingello.
On Monday, Mr Gillespie testified about his recollection of their “argument” at the couple’s home in Kirribilli.
The court was told Oscar the Cavoodle (pictured) would be staying with Mr Gillespie’s extended family in Wingello – in NSW’s South Highlands while he was away on work
“I dropped Oscar off for a three or four day trip I had to do,” he said.
“Gina asked about my decision and why I made the decision to have Oscar in Wingello.
“I said… he’s my dog. I want him to be with the family.
“Gina’s response was, ‘What does your family have to do with decisions about Oscars?’
‘I said they have every reason to be involved. I leave him in their care, so of course they have a say in what happens to his future.
“She started swearing at me like she was a lawyer and barked back.
“It was back and forth and then I yelled at her.
“In the end, after I hit my limit of getting spanked by her, I said, ‘Keep the damn dog for now’.”
Mr Gillespie said they did not speak for a couple of weeks afterwards because Ms Edwards was “too emotional and didn’t want to talk”.
He said Mr Flavell told him he was disappointed in what had happened and to “leave it alone for a while”.
Ms Edwards later emailed Mr Gillespie a “long apology”.
He said he was pleased things were resolved and was “happy to continue with visits”.
Ms Edwards previously testified that “many things” she wrote in the email were not truthful.
Channel Nine’s lawyer Dauid Sibtain (pictured) called Mr Gillespie to testify on Monday
“I wasn’t embarrassed, embarrassed or humiliated,” she said.
“I was told to say that because it would appeal to him based on his personality profile.”
When asked if the line was true when she said she saw his side of the problem 100 percent, she said no, noting that he had yelled and startled her during the confrontation.
“I definitely wasn’t telling the truth. I didn’t see his side at all,’ she said.
Mr Gillespie’s sister-in-law Simona Angeli previously testified that her family “loved and adored” Oscar.
She dismissed the suggestion that they had not taken good care of the dog.
Mrs Edwards and her husband Ken Flavell (pictured) were registered as the dog’s second owners
She said he took regular walks and had a large backyard to roam around in, and she brushed him at least twice a day.
Mr Gillespie also testified about Oscar’s involvement in a reality television show called Pooch Perfect in late 2019 while he was at sea.
He agreed that the television appearance would boost Oscar’s Instagram profile, so he supported it.
But Oscar wasn’t brought back to Wingello after his appearance on the show.
“I was sent an email with a complaint,” Mr Gillespie said.
“I contacted the family immediately.”
A confrontation between Mark Gillespie (pictured with Oscar the Cavoodle) and Mrs Edwards at a dog park was filmed by A Current Affair
That prompted his brother and sister-in-law to go to the police to report Oscar stolen.
“They video chatted with me so I could prove I was the owner of the dog,” Mr Gillespie said.
Consent Orders were finally issued in November 2021 to hand Oscar over to Ms Edwards and Mr Falvell.
The hearing before Judge Michael Wigney continues.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11553087/Oscar-cavoodle-court-battle-Owner-Mark-Gillespie-claims-afford-fight-Gina-Edwards.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Oscar-Cavoodle court battle: Owner Mark Gillespie claims he can’t afford to fight Gina Edwards