Australia’s top cop says raiding journalist’s home was no mistake

Original article by Jennifer Dudley-Nicholson
Herald Sun – Page: Online : 1-Sep-20

Australian Federal Police Commissioner Reece Kershaw appeared before a Senate inquiry into press freedom on 31 August. He told the inquiry that the AFP had been right to raid the home of News Corp Australia journalist Annika Smethurst in mid-2019, despite the fact that the search warrant was subsequently ruled to be invalid by the High Court. Media, Entertainment & Arts Alliance CEO Paul Murphy told the inquiry that contestable search warrants are necessary to ensure press freedom. However, Kershaw and Department of Home Affairs secretary Michael Pezzullo argued that allowing such warrants would be "detrimental to the workings" of the police.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE, NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS, MEDIA, ENTERTAINMENT AND ARTS ALLIANCE, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF HOME AFFAIRS

AAP closure and AFP raids see Australia slide in World Press Freedom Index

Original article by Hannah Blackiston
Mumbrella – Page: Online : 24-Apr-20

Australia has ranked 26th in the 2020 World Press Freedom Index, down from 19th place in 2019. The index is compiled by Reporters Without Borders, which has indicated that the decline was largely due to the proposed closure of newswire service AAP and police raids on the ABC’s head office and the home of a News Corporation journalist in mid-2019. Numerous national security laws brought in since the September 11 terror attacks in the US and defamation laws passed in 2018 were also seen as of concern by Reporters Without Borders.

CORPORATES
REPORTERS WITHOUT BORDERS, AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS, AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE, AUSTRALIAN ASSOCIATED PRESS PTY LTD, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC

AFP search of journalist’s home illegal

Original article by Michael Pelly, Andrew Tillett
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 10 : 16-Apr-20

Australian Federal Police commissioner Reece Kershaw says News Corp journalist Annika Smethurst could still face criminal charges despite a landmark High Court ruling on the legal validity of a search warrant. The court has unanimously ruled that the warrant used to search her home in June 2019 was invalid as it was too imprecise and "impossibly wide". However, the court narrowly rejected an application for an injunction requiring the AFP to return or destroy data that it seized in the raid.

CORPORATES
NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, HIGH COURT OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE

High Court to rule on warrant AFP used to raid journalist Annika Smethurst’s Canberra home

Original article by Elizabeth Byrne, Matthew Doran
abc.net.au – Page: Online : 15-Apr-20

The issue of press freedom will come under scrutiny again on 15 April, when the High Court decides on the validity of a search warrant used in a media raid in June 2019. News Corp journalist Annika Smethurst has challenged the legal validity of the search warrant issued to Australian Federal Police officers who raided her home in Canberra. Her lawyers have argued amongst other things that the law under which the warrant was issued was invalid because it breached the implied constitutional right to freedom of political communication. The ABC has unsuccessfully challenged the search warrant used in a separate raid on its Sydney premises.

CORPORATES
HIGH COURT OF AUSTRALIA, NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE, AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION

Media regime just a way to keep bad laws

Original article by Richard Ferguson, Leo Shanahan
The Weekend Australian – Page: 7 : 29-Feb-20

The Australian Federal Police and the Department of Home Affairs have used a joint submission to the parliamentary joint committee on intelligence and security to propose a ‘notice to produce’ regime for journalists. This would require an independent body to assess requests from security agencies for access to documents and communications between journalists and their confidential sources. The proposal has been criticised by News Corp Australia’s executive chairman Michael Miller, while Labor contends that journalists would still be at risk from prosecution and jail.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF HOME AFFAIRS, AUSTRALIA. PARLIAMENTARY JOINT COMMITTEE ON INTELLIGENCE AND SECURITY, NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS, AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION

ABC won’t appeal Federal Court ruling that found AFP raids on public broadcaster valid

Original article by
abc.net.au – Page: Online : 28-Feb-20

ABC MD David Anderson has advised that the public broadcaster will not contest the Federal Court’s recent decision to dismiss its challenge to the validity of police raids on its Sydney offices in mid-2019. The court found that the Australian Federal Police’s warrant to search the ABC’s premises was valid, and it ordered the broadcaster to pay costs. Anderson has described the ruling as a "blow to media freedom", adding that it has implications for journalists and the public’s right to know.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION, AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA

Judge’s news dictate sets risky precedent

Original article by Nicola Berkovic
The Australian – Page: 3 : 20-Nov-19

A Curtin University academic has expressed concern about a court ruling about disclosing the identify of a psychologist who was found guilty of professional misconduct. The Family Court of Western Australia ruled that ‘The Australian’ must submit a draft article for its approval before the story can be published, as the Family Law Act prevents the identification of witnesses in family law proceedings. Associate professor of journalism Joseph Fernandez says the ruling is "troubling" and has implications for freedom of the press.

CORPORATES
FAMILY COURT OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA, CURTIN UNIVERSITY OF TECHNOLOGY, ONE NATION PARTY, AUSTRALIAN LAW REFORM COMMISSION

Protect media freedom to protect the community

Original article by Chris Merritt
The Australian – Page: 24 : 15-Nov-19

Law Council of Australia president Arthur Moses will use a speech on 15 November to urge the federal government to take action on the issue of media freedom. In addition to calling for better protection for journalists, Moses will argue the need for more safeguards for whistleblowers in the public service. Moses will contend that journalists need greater protection due to the important role they play in protecting the community from government abuse and misinformation.

CORPORATES
LAW COUNCIL OF AUSTRALIA, HOLDING REDLICH, AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS, AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION, SKY NEWS, AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE

Coalition flags press freedom law changes

Original article by Rosie Lewis, Olivia Caisley
The Australian – Page: 6 : 14-Nov-19

Attorney-General Christian Porter and Communications Minister Paul Fletcher met with media industry executives to discuss the issue of press freedom on 13 November. News Corp Australasia’s executive chairman Michael Miller says the talks were "encouraging", and further meetings will be held after the parliamentary joint committee on intelligence and security hands down its report at the end of the month. Nine Entertainment CEO Hugh Marks and ABC MD David Anderson also attended the meeting.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF COMMUNICATIONS AND THE ARTS, NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS, NINE ENTERTAINMENT COMPANY HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX NEC, AUSTRALIAN BROADCASTING CORPORATION

AFP raid on journo’s home trespass

Original article by Olivia Caisley
The Australian – Page: 7 : 13-Nov-19

The High Court has been told that a warrant to search a News Corp Australia journalist’s home was invalid as it did not state the exact nature of her alleged offence. The lawyer representing Annika Smethurst also alleged that the Australian Federal Police’s search warrant infringed the implied freedom of political communication. Stephen Lloyd SC said the AFP should be either forced to delete any files it had extracted from Smethurst’s mobile phone during the raid in June, or be subject to a court order preventing any use of those files.

CORPORATES
NEWS CORP AUSTRALIA PTY LTD, NEWS CORPORATION – ASX NWS, NATIONWIDE NEWS PTY LTD, AUSTRALIAN FEDERAL POLICE, HIGH COURT OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIAN SIGNALS DIRECTORATE