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September 2018

Progress report on my private prosecution

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What a week!

After a few days in various barristers chambers, solicitors offices, trades hall and Labor Party headquarters my private prosecution brief was completed last Thursday.

On Friday I attended at the Registry of the court which will hold the preliminary hearings in this matter.

After dealing with the Registry counter staff I met with the Registrar of the Court.

He walked into our meeting with a large bulldog clip holding my file together.

He put the file on the desk, stabbed his index finger on the Defendant's name and said, "Is that who I think it is?"

He was a very pragmatic and realistic man who said words to the effect, "She's hardly gonna front up here and agree with you is she?"

He then did our prosecution what I think is a great favour.

My prosecution brief had been prepared exactly as I would have prepared it while I was a policeman - ie with statements from witnesses.

The Registrar of the court of competent jurisdiction for this matter (we have at least agreed that much!) requested that I get the witness's evidence in Affidavit format - that is as sworn evidence.

He said, "Before I issue this court attendance notice and expose (your defendant) to imprisonment (should the defendant not appear) I want Affidavits".

That means revisiting each witness to explain the difference and to get their evidence sworn in Affidavit format.

Yesterday I visited the home of a key witness only to discover he/she's in Japan until Friday.

Over the next few days (in company with a NSW based lawyer) I hope to visit a small town near Kalgoorlie, the suburbs of Perth, the WA State Archives and certain officials in a WA Government Department.

I don't propose to visit Japan but I may have to visit Malaysia with our Australian lawyer.

This is a very serious matter - the defendant faces a possible jail term.

I think the case against the defendant is very strong - as does my legal team and other advisors.

In summary I think it's been a good week of progress

  • we've confirmed (in person) the court as competent to hear this matter
  • the Registrar has given me the precise format his Court requires to receive my brief and to issue the Court Attendance Notice for service on The Defendant
  • the CDPP is less likely to take up and abandon this prosecution while sworn evidence has been filed and stamped by the Court.



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I can't do all this alone!  We have been very fortunate in having legal advisors and others help out with their time, but it's a bit much to ask a lawyer to front his own air fares to the West and elsewhere.

Michael Smith

National Australia Bank

BSB: 084855 

Acct No: 537650476

PS - I'm aware that when last I asked for your help the Paypal button wasn't working - I've posted it here in two different formats!



Locked out of my Google Gmail email accounts for 5 days


[email protected]


I have two Gmail email accounts

[email protected] 

[email protected]

Last night I was locked out of both of them at precisely the same time - by Google.

Despite me answering security questions, confirming old passwords and receiving a new unlock code on another email service Google has told me it will take them up to 5 days to allow me access again.

It may not surprise you that this comes at a critical time in my private prosecution.

Several of our brains trust and I are engaged in correspondence at present - you'll know who you are.

Could I ask that you resend any emails to

[email protected]

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New ABC Chair Kirstin Ferguson empowers women

About time women got a fair go at the ABC.  


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Using the hashtag #CelebratingWomen she committed to profiling two women on Twitter and Facebook every single day for the whole year.

The momentum it has created has exceeded Ferguson’s wildest dreams.

Leadership lessons

Your leadership is what makes you a good leader

“It’s taken me decades to feel confident in my own leadership. I am okay with my vulnerabilities. They make me who I am. Don’t feel there is a ‘type’ of person you need to be to have a board career or take a leadership position.”

Forget perfect

“From the outside, it might seem like someone is fabulous at all times. I struggle to keep everything together with work and the kids and in recent years I have embraced that. Don’t let feeling like you don’t have everything together at all times, preclude you from chasing your dreams.”

The kids will be fine

“I was most indignant one day because one of our kids was sick and my daughter had asked the school to ring the nanny. I said next time someone is sick call me first.

“And then the next time they did ring me and it rang out because I was on a plane. I had to concede that it is probably wise to call the nanny first. It stuck in my mind because my initial impression was ‘I can do it all’. But I can’t. I try my best and I accept that’s okay and the kids are perfectly fine.”

Bring every experience with you

“I didn’t leave the military behind me when I went to a law firm. And the same when I went to lead the psychologists. I keep it all in my kitbag. Just like we want diversity in any team or board, we want diversity in our experiences. You can have a totally diverse career in so many different environments and combined that will make you a better leader.”

Say yes

“I am a real believer in saying yes to opportunities.”

This article was first published on Women’s Agenda.

Hello Sailor! drops in on the troops

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Minister for Defence, the Hon Christopher Pyne MP, travelled to the Middle East on 26-27 September where he spent time with Australian troops, and met key leaders in Afghanistan and the United Arab Emirates. Minister Pyne was accompanied by the Chief of the Defence Force, General Angus Campbell, AO, DSC.


During the visit to Kabul, where Minister Pyne stayed overnight, he thanked ADF personnel deployed on Operation HIGHROAD, Australia’s contribution to NATO’s Resolute Support mission in Afghanistan.


“It was important and valuable to have the opportunity to meet our servicemen and women on operations and hear first-hand about their experiences, challenges and achievements,” Minister Pyne said.


“My message to Australia’s troops is that your work is vitally important to Australia’s national security interests and you are achieving so much despite the massive challenges you face.


“Australians have every reason to be proud of the commitment and professionalism of our troops who are working shoulder to shoulder with our partners to build a positive future for Afghanistan.


“I was encouraged to hear our soldiers say that the standard kit they wear and use to protect themselves has improved dramatically in the last three years and is the best they have known.


“It shows the importance of the Coalition Government’s $200 billion investment in military capability to better protect our servicemen and women and to keep them ahead of the enemy. They deserve nothing less.”


Minister Pyne met with troops over dinner at Camp Grant and a barbeque lunch at Camp Qargha, where ADF mentors have been integral to the success of the Afghan National Army Officers Academy.


Graduates at the Academy now exceed 3,300 including more than 150 female officers. Minister Pyne also visited the ADF Task Group at Hamid Karzai International Airport, Headquarters Resolute Support, and the Marshal Fahim National Defense University where approximately 300 ADF and civilian personnel support the development of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces through the current train, advise and assist mission.


“The ADF’s support to the Government of Afghanistan is helping to contain the threat of international terrorism and provide the foundations of a better future for its people,” Minister Pyne said.


During his visit to Afghanistan, Minister Pyne met Lieutenant General Tariq Shah Bahrami, the Afghan Minister for Defence, as well as the Commander of the NATO-led Resolute Support mission, General Scott Miller from the US.


“During these meetings I re-affirmed Australia’s support to Afghanistan and reiterated our ongoing commitment to the Resolute Support mission which includes additional personnel to support the development of the Afghan Airforce helicopter capabilities announced in July.


“We will continue to stand with our international partners in facing global security challenges like terrorism.”


Minister Pyne highlighted the social progress achieved in Afghanistan as a result of improved security.


“The contribution of Australia and our NATO partners has helped see a dramatic increase in school enrolments from around eight hundred thousand in 2001 to eight million today. Under Taliban rule, no girls were allowed to go to school and now 40 per cent of students are girls,” he said.


In the United Arab Emirates, Minister Pyne met the Minister of State for Defence, His Excellency Mohammed bin Ahmed Al Bowardi.


“This was a great opportunity to reaffirm the friendship between Australia and the United Arab Emirates,” Minister Pyne said.


“Our relationship is based on common interests and shared security challenges, including our commitment to international efforts to counter Daesh, supporting the rules‑based global order, and promoting regional security and stability.”


Minister Pyne also met with the Chairman of the Emirates Defence Industries Company during his visit.


“Deeper engagement between our defence industries, including through industry partnerships and cooperation, will strengthen the broader bilateral relationship and contribute to a stronger, more sustainable and globally competitive Australian defence industry in support of the Australian Defence Force’s capability needs.”

Marise Payne boasts about doling out more $$$ at UN for Paris climate accord

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Sky News Australia to change name & branding post Murdoch??? Suggestions?

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I'm reliably advised:

This sell off will mean that Sky in Australia will have to ditch its name. 
They've had a market research company trying to come up with a new name. 
"The Australian News Channel" is most likely - using the paper's logo. 
How about your suggestions??
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ABC Board meeting to elect new chairman after Justin Milne asked to resign today

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From the ABC a short time ago:


ABC chairman Justin Milne has resigned, four days after the surprise sacking of managing director Michelle Guthrie.

The ABC Board is meeting at noon today to decide who will be the acting chairman.

In an exclusive interview, Mr Milne described the week's events as a "firestorm" and said he "wanted to provide a release valve".

"Clearly there is a lot of pressure on the organisation, and as always, my interests have been to look after the interests of the corporation," he said.

"It's clearly not a good thing for everybody to be trying to do their job with this kind of firestorm going on.

Mr Milne had been under enormous pressure to stand down.

In the days after Ms Guthrie's acrimonious departure, explosive reports claimed Mr Milne had earlier the then managing director to sack two prominent reporters because the Government "hated" them.

Fairfax media claimed Mr Milne emailed Ms Guthrie in May to insist senior journalist Emma Alberici be fired.

Another report in News Limited publications claimed Mr Milne had ordered the sacking of the ABC's political editor, Andrew Probyn.

Mr Milne today told Ms Sales he had always tried to safeguard the ABC's editorial independence.

"There was absolutely no interference in the independence of the ABC by the Government," he said.

"Nobody from the Government has ever rung me and told me what to do in relation to the ABC."

Earlier today, the ABC board met without Mr Milne.