A Melbourne engineer who claims a colleague repeatedly farted near him has vowed to go to the High Court after losing his bullying case on appeal.
David Hingst, 56, had sought $1.8 million in a suit against his former employer Construction Engineering in a bullying case that involved ex-colleague Greg Short.
The engineer claimed “flatulence was a form of bullying” and Mr Short was a serial farter.
A judge blasted the case out of the Supreme Court last year, but Mr Hingst made an appeal bid.
The Court of Appeal ruled against Mr Hingst on Friday, refusing to grant him leave to appeal and ordering him to pay the defendant’s legal costs.
“I’m taking it to the High Court,” Mr Hingst told the panel of judges after the ruling was delivered.
Mr Hingst did not speak to reporters as he left court with an item of clothing held over his mouth and face.
But he earlier described the alleged bullying, saying Mr Short would come into his small, windowless office several times a day and break wind.
“He would fart behind me and walk away. He would do this five or six times a day,” he told AAP outside court after the appeal hearing on Monday.
He also said Mr Short had abused him over the phone, used profane language, excluded him from meetings and taunted him with gestures.
“He thrusted his bum at me while he’s at work,” Mr Hingst told the judges.
Mr Hingst, who has represented himself throughout the initial 18-day trial and subsequent appeal process, sought leave to appeal on several grounds.
He claimed he didn’t get a fair trial as he felt under pressure from Supreme Court Justice Rita Zammit when questioning witnesses.
But in the Court of Appeal ruling, Justice Phillip Priest and Justice David Beach said the trial judge was patient and tolerant.
They cited a section of the trial that centred on a so-called “fart off” that Mr Short allegedly had with another employee Phil Hamilton.
“The two of you actually did a fart off,” Mr Hingst said to Mr Short in cross-examination.
“You came over to him and dropped your guts, and then he went over to you and dropped his guts.”
The appeal judges said Justice Zammit correctly took time to clarify misstated evidence during this line of questioning.
“The judge’s patience and forbearance are evident,” Justice Priest and Justice Beach said.
Mr Hingst said he suffered a psychiatric injury as a result of the bullying and has not returned to work since he was dismissed from Construction Engineering in 2009.
His $1.8 million claim included compensation for injuries and for lost earnings, having previously earned a salary of about $100,000 for his design and engineering work.