Author Archives: Kev

Legal Aid needs sorting

SYDNEY  siege gunman Man Haron Monis and his partner racked up tens of thousands of dollars in legal fees unsuccessfully ­defending themselves after sending hate mail to the families of dead Diggers — all at taxpayers’ expense.

After shopping around, Monis found lawyer Hugo Aston. Aston told him he thought he had a case for an appeal against his conviction, for sending letters to the families of dead Diggers.

“It seemed there was a case here for the High Court to determine the veracity of the legislation under which he was charged,” Aston said yesterday. “Basically, on the implied right to free speech, because not only did he send the letters to families of the deceased he also sent them to politicians.”

How much did this appeal cost?

“I wouldn’t have a clue, it was all funded through the public purse, Legal Aid.”

Wouldn’t have a clue?  So he didn’t raise a file and record time spent on the case.  He didn’t discuss it with senior partners and Legal Aid were never sent a bill?

Right!

What he means is, he is embarrassed and the firm are trying to downplay their contribution.

Who draws the line in these cases?  I have fondly thought that Legal Aid was available to poor people to help them get justice.  Now I find it’s available for enemies of the state to attack us.

Further adding to the cost to taxpayers, Monis’s partner, Amirah Droudis, ran a concurrent case over the same matter, also to the High Court.

“They didn’t strike me as particularly sane sorts of people, they seemed a little unhinged,” Mr Aston said of the couple. “And, of course, what they were doing had nothing to do with Islam, it was born of fanaticism and ignorance.”

Aston’s law firm obviously did well out of the appeal but does anyone ever apply ethics when deciding who should get Legal Aid or is it just a case of “I think I see a loop hole where we can make money.

Legal Aid NSW paid for Monis’s legal representation — including a law firm and three barristers — as he took his case all the way to the High Court, despite his lawyer considering him “unhinged” and “fanatical” at the time.

The report ran to 85 pages and three judges of the high court went Monis’s way.  What were the thinking – that it’s really OK to send recently bereaved widows and families hate letters telling them their soldier relatives were murderers because…free speech?

This whole affair offends me in so many ways. The judiciary release on bail a man charged with accessory to murder of his wife, of 40 or 50 cases of sexual abuse and found guilty of writing the letters to Army KIA Next of Kin and then Legal Aid chips in to help him by billing that taxpayer for the costs of a law firm and three barristers.

And then he goes to the Lindt Cafe.

 

 

Sydney seige ends in tragedy

monis

His name is Man Haron Monis and he has just murdered two Australians and wounded two others in the Sydney seige

He is known to police for being an accessory before and after the fact of the murder of his wife by his new girlfriend.  He has 40 charges of sexual assault against him and came to my notice for his habit of writing deplorable and offensive letters to the next of kin of diggers killed in action

It has been Monis’ on-going legal battle for his conviction for penning the poisonous letters to the families of dead Australian soldiers between 2007 and 2009 that has consumed him.

It is understood yesterday’s incident followed an unsuccessful, last-ditch attempt in the High Court on Friday to have the charges overturned.

With all that is known about him I find it odd that the Magistrate considered him no threat to the public and released him on bail.

Monis was sentenced to 300 hours of community service and placed on a two year good behaviour bond for the “offensive and deplorable letters” sent with the assistance of his girlfriend Amirah Droudis.

They were sent to the families of  Private Luke Worsley and Lance Corporal Jason Marks, who were killed in Afghanistan in 2007 and 2008.

He also sent a letter in 2009 to the family of the Austrade official Craig Senger, who was killed in the bombing of the Marriott Hotel in Jakarta in 2007.
Monis claimed the letters were his own version of a “flower basket” or “condolence card”.

Bree Till, widow of Sergeant Brett Till, killed while defusing a bomb on March 12, 2009, said at the time of his conviction:

“We sat reading these letters (which) made out to be something supportive but then the juxtaposition of this man accusing my husband of being a child-killer while dictating how I should raise my children. It was scary,” she said.

He fought the validity of the charges all the way to the High Court arguing they were political and only sought to persuade the families to oppose Australia’s military involvement in Afghanistan.

But when he lost that battle, and had to stand trial, he pleaded guilty to all 12 charges against him in August 2013

My take on the matter is that the people are fuming about the incident and questions will be asked of the police and the state politicians.  All I saw yesterday was blue uniforms saying how they wanted the incident to be resolved peacefully which is a noble aim that flies in the face of what we know about Islamic radicals and this guy in particular. The only good reason I can think of for not killing him by sniper is that the police had intelligence that he had bombs and/or accomplices who would detonate the bombs if things didn’t go his way.

If this is not the case then the question remains; why wasn’t he taken out, knowing what we do of his hatred of Australians?

The TRG teams are, of course, under orders so my statement is not leveled at them.

Another Terrorist Sub-human dead

AN Australian serving as a sniper for Islamic State has been killed battling the Iraqi military amid airstrikes by coalition warplanes in Ramadi, in the tightly contested Anbar province, according to claims emerging from Baghdad.

According to reports, an unidentified Islamic State fighter who is “probably” Australian was killed during heavy fighting in the south of Ramadi on Wednesday.

Bit by bit we rid the country of sub-humans.

I wonder if David Hicks might like to volunteer to fight for the enemy again?

CIA Torture

The US Senate Intelligence Committee has a Democrat majority and therein lies the rub.

Republican members of the Senate committee that released a highly critical report on CIA terrorist interrogations say the study draws inaccurate conclusions about the usefulness of information obtained from detainees through “enhanced” questioning.

“We have no doubt that the CIA’s detention program saved lives and played a vital role in weakening (al-Qaeda) while the program was in operation,” conclude six of the seven GOP committee members, Sens. Saxby Chambliss of Georgia, Richard Burr of North Carolina, James Risch of Idaho, Dan Coats of Indiana, Marco Rubio of Florida and Tom Coburn of Oklahoma.

Senator Susan Collins, the other Republican, voted to release the report but was disturbed that it had not been conducted in a bipartisan manner.

……in June 2013, I asked that we hold a hearing prior to a vote to declassify this report that would have included CIA witnesses. Such a hearing would have permitted a robust and much-needed debate about the claims made in the report compared to the rebuttals in the Agency’s formal response. Unfortunately, this hearing did not occur.

I therefore put in the same category as an ALP report recommending we waste billions of dollars on climate change.

I actually don’t care if a terrorist sub-human is waterboarded. If he plans to murder thousands of Westerners or just decapitate one then I think it’s OK that we try and find out before the event.

UPDATE:

On Monday CIA Director John Brennan rebutted two of the central premises of the Democratic Senate report on CIA’s enhanced interrogating techniques. Brennan said the controversial program produced evidence that helped avert potential strikes against the U.S. Today he admitted the information led to Bin Laden.

Sorry, not eligible

A FEDERAL Court judge has backed calls for a slain commando to join his comrades on the ­Australian War Memorial’s Roll of Honour, despite his being killed in a botched training exercise ­between deployments to ­Afghanistan.

What sort of idiot is the Judge. If he doesn’t understand the basic tenets of the country he lives in then what is he doing on the bench?

I feel sorry for the mother, what parent wouldn’t, but wanting her son’s name on a roll of honour that is only for those killed at war is not the answer.

Queensland not happy

THE Queensland government, as host of last weekend’s G20 ­summit, is incensed over what it sees as an ill-informed, insulting speech from Barack Obama about climate change, the Great Barrier Reef and coal.

I don’t blame them, I was incensed as well that Obama turned an economic forum into a meeting of the Church of the Later Day Alarmists.

Mr Obama said on Saturday that climate change “here in ­Australia” means “longer droughts, more wildfires” and “the incredible natural glory of the Great Barrier Reef is threatened”.

Where on earth did he drag that from?

“I have not had a chance to go to the Great Barrier Reef and I want to come back, and I want my daughters to be able to come back, and I want them to be able to bring their daughters or sons to visit,” the President said.

Your kids and their kids and their kids ad infinitum will be able to visit the reef…it’ll still be here.  Cyclones and Crown of Thorns star fish are the biggest threat to the reef and it has recovered from everything thrown at it so far.

Give us a break, Bill

TONY Abbott should reveal the negative impacts of free trade with China, Bill Shorten says, accusing the government of “selective leaks to soften up the electorate” for painful concessions to Beijing.

Hypocrisy, thy name is ALP.  Bill, how about you reveal the negative impacts of the Joe Ludwig’s closure of the live export trade to Indonesia before you say anything about this deal with China.

It could could well help the cattle industry recover from your stuff-up.

Diggers being diggers

ONE of Australia’s leading combat battalions employed topless waitresses to serve drinks during an “Oktoberfest” party held at the unit’s Townsville base.

OMG the horror!  Hetrosexual behaviour - have to put a stop to that!

The event, at which the four civilian women were encouraged to remove their clothes in defi­ance of direct orders from the commanding officer of the 2nd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, is the latest in a line of recent military scandals.

OK, that’s a bit different then – the Corporal should be charged and punished but we shouldn’t be reading about it.  A minor disciplinary matter makes the national press because of an agenda that is not necessarily in the interests of the Army.

He was charged;

During a disciplinary hearing, Colonel Bassingthwaighte found the corporal guilty of this breach, stripped him of his rank and sentenced him to 14 days detention.

but it was thrown out.

After serving his time in a cell at Sydney’s Holsworthy Barracks, the corporal lodged a petition against his conviction with a ­senior army officer independent of 2RAR. This review found flaws with the legal advice provided to the battalion’s commanding officer, including that he should not have been able to pass judgment on a charge of disobeying his own order. The corporal’s sentence was quashed and his rank reinstated.

I would hazard a guess that the Corporal has peaked and I can’t see him making sergeant any time soon.  Not because he was involved with girls taking their tops off; not that he disobeyed a lawful command; but because he took the Commanding Officer to court and won on a legality that smells of political correctness.

That’s strange and puts aside hundreds of years of military discipline.  I would have a few charges from my wild youth that I should be able to have set aside based on this finding.  A lot of minor administrative matters within a battalion are detailed in what was known as Routine Orders and it was a chargeable offence to disobey Routine Orders.  These orders were signed by the CO.

Is this still the case – maybe a current serving soldier could comment.

Was the senior army officer independent of 2RAR within the Corporal’s chain of command and if not, does this now set a precedence where every soldier charged and  disciplined by his Commanding Officer has the right to complain to any passing officer and have offences set aside.

Not good.

Seems to me that lawyers are making it harder for Officers and NCOs to apply discipline and and that can only be bad for a professional army.

Nova Peris in the news

LABOR senator Nova Peris has asked federal police to investigate the leaking of private emails that led to allegations she sought taxpayer funding for a secret lover and sent him ­racially charged emails claiming white Australians “hate black people”.

That’s fine but I trust the AFP are also looking into the question of whether she actually used public monies to pay for Trinidadian sprinter Ato Boldon to visit Australia so they could pursue an extramarital affair.

Just curious.

Warren Mundine said taxpayers could ignore Senator Peris’s private life as long as they “got bang for the dollar”.

“If it’s true (she made racial comments), it was a silly statement and she needs to say something about that. Otherwise there’s nothing in it for me.”

Therein lies the problem. Warren is suggesting so long as Nova does a good job as a Senator then it doesn’t matter if she makes racist comments.

Not the point, Warren.  The point is; did she, or did she not use public monies to satisfy her libido?

Cattle producers launch class action

NORTHERN cattle producers and exporters have launched a class action against the commonwealth, challenging the “reckless’’ decision by the Gillard government in 2011 to ban live animal exports to Indonesia.

Northern Territory cattle producers Dougal and Emily Brett who run Waterloo Station, about 540km from Katherine, are the lead applicants. The couple had cattle worth about $1.4 million in their yards ready to be exported to Indonesia when trade was halted. The ban up-ended their lives and their industry.

The ban up-ended the lives of thousands of people and the industry and represents one of the worst decisions ever made by the Rudd/Gillard/Rudd debacle.  I was travelling through North West Western Australia and the Northern Territory shortly after the shock announcement and the hatred against the government was palpable.

Ludwig, the minister who closed down the industry, will never be welcomed west of Brisbane yet I notice he is still a Queensland Senator.  It’s a pity he can’t be held financially responsible for the decision but unfortunately, any costs awarded will just taken out of federal revenue and only people who remember will apportion the costs, albeit only in their mind, against the costs of electing an ALP government.

Australia never really recovered from the Whitlam experiment and now we have billions to sort out from the most recent ALP experiment.

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