Qld border closure irrational, discriminatory: silk

Original article by Chris Merritt
The Australian – Page: 1 & 4 : 10-Jun-20

A Brisbane-based travel agency is the lead plaintiff in a High Court challenge to the legal validity of the Queensland government’s coronavirus-induced border closure. The six plaintiffs want the government to disclose the information it relied upon when deciding to close the state’s borders. Amongst other things, they contend that the border closure breaches their constitutional right to travel freely within Australia and goes beyond what is necessary to control the virus’s spread.

CORPORATES
HIGH COURT OF AUSTRALIA, QUEENSLAND. DEPT OF THE PREMIER AND CABINET

AUSTRAC, Westpac head to court

Original article by James Frost
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 19 : 9-Jun-20

Westpac and AUSTRAC are having difficulty agreeing on an agreed statement of facts as the two parties prepare to heard for court. AUSTRAC has accepted Westpac’s admission that it broke the law 23 million times, but AUSTRAC has indicated it plans to pursue Westpac for a series of "unquantifiable" breaches. Justice James Allsop said on 30 March that Westpac and AUSTRAC should be ready to go to trial "sooner than later" in a case that may well cost Westpac more than $1 billion to settle.

CORPORATES
WESTPAC BANKING CORPORATION – ASX WBC, AUSTRALIA. ATTORNEY-GENERAL’S DEPT. AUSTRALIAN TRANSACTION REPORTS AND ANALYSIS CENTRE

Fortescue facing massive compo bill

Original article by Brad Thompson
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 3 : 30-May-20

The High Court has rejected Fortescue Metals Group’s bid to overturn a previous Federal Court ruling in favour of the Yindjibarndi Aboriginal Corporation. The case centred on the traditional owners’ native title claim over some 2,700 sq km of land in Western Australia’s Pilbara region; the land in question contains Fortescue’s Solomon iron ore mining hub. The YAC is now expected to seek compensation from Fortescue; this is likely to comprise a percentage of Fortescue’s revenue from iron ore mining in WA.

CORPORATES
FORTESCUE METALS GROUP LIMITED – ASX FMG, YINDJIBARNDI ABORIGINAL CORPORATION, HIGH COURT OF AUSTRALIA, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA

Casual benefits ruling raises JobKeeper risk

Original article by David Marin-Guzman
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 6 : 22-May-20

Employers may face claims for up to $8bn in back pay following the Federal Court’s ruling that casual workers who have ‘regular and predictable shifts’ are entitled to paid leave and a 25 per cent loading. Industrial Relations Minister Christian Porter has flagged government action in response to the ruling, saying one option may be to give more casual workers the right to request that their jobs become permanent. Council of Small Business Organisations CEO Peter Strong says the ruling will deter small businesses from hiring casual workers, while Australian Industry Group CEO Innes Willox warns of the potential for large-scale job losses when the JobKeeper scheme ends in September.

CORPORATES
FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF EMPLOYMENT, SKILLS, SMALL AND FAMILY BUSINESS, AUSTRALIAN LABOR PARTY, COUNCIL OF SMALL BUSINESS ORGANISATIONS OF AUSTRALIA LIMITED, THE AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRY GROUP

Google hit for defamatory search results

Original article by Tessa Akerman
The Australian – Page: 3 : 1-May-20

The Supreme Court of Victoria has directed Google to pay lawyer George Defteros $40,000 over search results linked to his name that he alleged were defamatory. Justice Melinda Richards stated that a 2016 link to an article in ‘The Age’ did carry defamatory imputations, but she noted that Defteros had taken some years to get in touch with the newspaper and ask for the article to be removed. Richards also noted that Defteros had referred to criminal Graham Kinninburgh as "a friend", and she suggested that this "reduced the sting of the defamatory imputation" that Defteros felt.

CORPORATES
GOOGLE INCORPORATED, SUPREME COURT OF VICTORIA

Cambridge Analytica scandal: Watchdog given green light to pursue Facebook

Original article by Leo Shanahan
The Australian – Page: Online : 24-Apr-20

The Federal Court has given the Australian Information & Privacy Commissioner the go-ahead to serve legal documents on Facebook Incorporated and Facebook Ireland. The Information Commissioner is targeting Facebook over claims that the personal data of more than 300,000 Australians was breached as part of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. Facebook is facing possible fines of over $1 billion under Australian privacy laws; it has already been fined $5 billion by US regulators.

CORPORATES
FACEBOOK INCORPORATED, FACEBOOK IRELAND, CAMBRIDGE ANALYTICA LLC, FEDERAL COURT OF AUSTRALIA, AUSTRALIA. OFFICE OF THE AUSTRALIAN INFORMATION COMMISSIONER

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

Cardinal George Pell leaves prison after High Court quashes abuse convictions

Original article by
The New Daily – Page: Online : 8-Apr-20

Victoria’s Office of Public Prosecutions has declined to comment on the High Court’s unanimous decision to quash Cardinal George Pell’s conviction on historical child sexual abuse charges. The full bench ruled that the evidence had failed to establish his guilt to the requisite standard of proof. Cardinal Pell had spent 400 days in jail after being convicted on five charges in December 2018. He has released a statement saying that a "serious injustice" had been remedied and reiterated that he is innocent of all charges. The father of one the alleged victims intends to pursue a civil case against Cardinal Pell.

CORPORATES
VICTORIA. DIRECTOR OF PUBLIC PROSECUTIONS

BHP loses epic tax battle

Original article by Nick Evans
The Australian – Page: 20 : 12-Mar-20

The High Court has ruled in the Australian Taxation Office’s favour in a long-running tax dispute with BHP over its marketing hub in Singapore. BHP will have to pay an additional $US87m ($125m) in tax for the income years 2006 to 2018 after the court ruled that its Australian and British arms are ‘associates’ for tax purposes. A spokesman has noted that the resources group has paid some $71bn in taxes and royalties in Australia over the last decade.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, AUSTRALIAN TAXATION OFFICE