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Barrister successful in defamation case. - Vic Gallops - Racehorse TALK

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Online Arsenal

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O.P. « 2017-Mar-23, 08:11 PM »
Crikey ......this is a turn up for the books Victorian barrister Damien Sheals took exception to an article written by Patrick Bartley published in the Fairfax press and sued for defamation .....as G1X reports the jury found in his favour and the judge will rule on damages on  Monday.

https://www.g1x.com.au/news/racing/barrister-wins-cobalt-defamation-case

Giddy Up :beer:
« Last Edit: 2017-Mar-23, 09:37 PM by Arsenal »

Offline tontonan

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« 2017-Mar-23, 08:30 PM Reply #1 »
 :thumbsup:

Say what you will, that article by Bartley was rubbish.  But then most of his stuff is. 

He is a dreadful excuse for a journalist.  I don't care how many Bert Wolfe's he has won he is the only so called journalist that I ended up refusing to read because his work was so inadequate and stilted.  I think he has hurt the Fairfax press.  They have been in deep trouble for a long time but giving the likes of Bartley a platform is a deal breaker for readers with much higher expectations than that.  It is the worst insult the Fairfax Press can get but the Herald Sun's coverage of the issue left them for dead.  And they can thank Bartley for that.

Offline Gintara

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« 2017-Mar-24, 09:10 AM Reply #2 »
Fairfax must like employing myths, this bloke is the reason I refuse to read -

http://www.bandt.com.au/media/fairfax-media-loses-defamation-case-ordered-pay-300000


Offline tontonan

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« 2017-Mar-24, 11:25 AM Reply #3 »
And they aren't the only ones. 

During the same period Fairfax was sued by Joe Hockey over the Treasurer For Sale story , Eric Roozendaal for the Nathan Tinkler/Jodi Mackay piece and the worst of the lot the Melinda Pedavoli case when they wrongly accused the school teacher of being a child molester.    As the publisher has become more desperate its reportage has become more sensationalist and their defamation bill grows and grows. ... but their circulation does not.

Online Arsenal

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« 2017-Mar-29, 08:20 AM Reply #4 »
Haven't seen any report on the quantum of damages awarded to Mr Sheales.......the case was listed for hearing on Monday ..... personally I doubt that the comments made by Bartley in his opinion piece would have any effect on Shieles standing within the legal profession...... there was a recent case in QLD where a solicitor in a family dispute was described as "Dennis Denuto" the fictitious bumbling incompetent lawyer in the movie "The Castle" ...an insult which struck the solicitor deeply so he sued for defamation which the court dismissed ......on appeal the court declared there were no prospects of upsetting the original judge's ruling and dismissed the appeal.

Giddy Up :beer:

Online Arsenal

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« 2017-Mar-30, 03:28 PM Reply #5 »
Judge Dixon has reserved his decision on the award for damages......will  be issued in the near future.

Some interesting rulings issued on the arguments ...three in total..  might contain a clue as to the judge's thinking.


 http://www.austlii.edu.au/cgi-bin/sinodisp/au/cases/vic/VSC/2017/150.html?stem=0&synonyms=0&query=sheales

http://www.austlii.edu.au/cgi-bin/sinodisp/au/cases/vic/VSC/2017/151.html?stem=0&synonyms=0&query=sheales

http://www.austlii.edu.au/cgi-bin/sinodisp/au/cases/vic/VSC/2017/152.html?stem=0&synonyms=0&query=sheales

Giddy Up :beer:


Offline tontonan

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« 2017-Mar-30, 04:07 PM Reply #6 »
I recently that Joe Hockey's successful action against Fairfax  that resulted in damages of more than $200k would not have covered his legal bill as the court ruled he had to pay the defendant's costs for articles that were disallowed pertaining to the defamation action.

 I get the feeling we are likely to get a similar ruling here.  I token amount in damages will be awarded to Sheales to satisfy the jury's verdict but Sheales to be left to foot a legal bill that will negate the damages.  In other words the whole thing has been a lawyer's benefit as defamation actions often are.... but it might be instructive to some extent as far as trainers thinking of civil action against RVL might be concerned.

Online Arsenal

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« 2017-Jun-29, 08:04 PM Reply #7 »
Dixon J has given Damian Sheales a $175K payout after the jury decided he was defamed by an article in The Age newspaper over the cobalt case hearings in Victoria he failed to get upon the first leg but did on the less serious slur onhis reputation..

The reasons for decision are hereunder and further orders to be made on costs.


http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/cases/vic/VSC/2017/380.html

A well written decision well worth reading...some extracts follow:-


43   Each of these matters, the defendants submitted, suggested that the plaintiff had a robust character and was more than capable of ‘giving as good as he gets’. His own conduct at both the stewards hearing and in the course of the trial were matters supporting the view that any damages awarded to the plaintiff should be at the low end of the scale.

44   I accept that I may take account of the plaintiff’s performance in the witness box and before the tribunal in assessing his professional reputation, but care is needed not to draw adverse conclusions that were not distinctly put to the plaintiff in cross-examination. In respect of his attack on Mr Bartley from the witness box I formed the impression that there may have been a robust competitive relationship between the two men. Mr Bartley did not give evidence. I am satisfied that Mr Sheales not only presented as a robust character but he strongly felt the hurt and distress that he suffered from the publications.

45   Mr Sheales described the reactions expressed to him by colleagues, friends and others after reading the article.

(a)   A Supreme Court judge mentioned the article and said to him it doesn’t look good.

(b)   A magistrate who he ran into outside court commented that it was really not too good.

(c)   A County Court judge who the plaintiff saw in a café said, ‘How’s your war with Bartley going?’

(d)   A Crown Prosecutor commented to him that it just read terribly.

(e)   Shortly after the article was published a friend sent a text message to himself and a couple of other people that said ‘Wilson (our pet lab) is crook – I need a vet – anyone seen Sheales?’, which the plaintiff interpreted as:

[W]hat he'd taken away from the article was, if you have a sick animal and you let Sheales anywhere near it, no matter how well intentioned he might be, he might accidentally kill it. He certainly wouldn't be to any beneficiary to it.
46   The defendants submitted that only a small number of those who read the article either in its print or online forms was likely to have known the plaintiff or to have altered their views about him as a result of having read the articles. Each of Messrs Grace, Wraith, Purdy, and O’Shaughnessy did not think less of the plaintiff from what they had read. The plaintiff did not suggest that any of the people, referred to above, that he spoke to thought less of him and no witness was called who thought less of him as a result of having read the articles.

47   The plaintiff did not suggest that his practice as a barrister was in any way affected by publication of the articles. There was no claim for special damages.

48   The defendants submitted that while some damage to the plaintiff’s reputation will be presumed, for all of these reasons it is likely to have been modest.




Giddy Up :beer:
« Last Edit: 2017-Jun-29, 08:15 PM by Arsenal »

Offline Wenona

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« 2017-Jun-29, 10:07 PM Reply #8 »
And of course the most amazing thing for plebs like me is it takes three months to hand down the decision.  :no:

Online Arsenal

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« 2017-Jun-30, 09:34 AM Reply #9 »
This probably wouldn't have got to court if The Age editors and reporters  who Sheales contacted had responded appropriately to his messages which went unanswered ......they never returned his messages...IMO they deserved all they got although Sheales hisself gave as good as he got when giving evidence .. this was raised by the defence but as Dixon J rightly pointed out he was not acting as a dispassionate advocate but as an aggrieved plaintiff in making those attacks.........and it was only put in closing submissions .....it would have been an interesting trial to have been in the gallery. :thumbsup:

Giddy Up :beer:

Offline deepthroat

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« 2017-Jun-30, 10:31 AM Reply #10 »
That would be an Age/Bartley MO- from personal experience relating to another Bartley 'fact' was met with a response saying that Bartley had contacted me personally to discuss so the matter had been dealt with!
To which I replied- where did he get my contact details from?!
Still haven't got an answer on that one from 2016....
It won't be the last alternate fact piece from Bartley rest assured..


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