Justin Castelan, Barrister

Justin has been at the Victorian Bar for 18 years and specialises in defamation and commercial law. He set up this blog in 2012 to specifically write on developments in defamation and media law in Australia and throughout the common law world. Since that time he has posted more than 100 articles and contributed to other publications such as The International Forum for Responsible Media Blog in the UK.

He has been engaged as Counsel to act for many clients, including business people, political identities, sportspeople, internet publishers and Australian film bodies. Presently, he acts for Whirlpool, the largest internet forum in Australia, having more than 800,000 registered members and the publisher of more than 2.4 million threads. He is a regular speaker for the Leo Cussen Institute on the topic of Defamation Law on the internet.

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Recent cases in defamation law

The defendant

Guilty of $3.75 million radio defamation? … Mr Jones I presume: Wagner v Harbour Radio PL & Ors [2018] QSC 201

Denis, John, Neill and Joe Wagner are brothers from Toowoomba and the owners of a highly successful family business. Their father, Henry had conducted a concrete quarry, stone masonry and earthmoving business. The sons rapidly expanded the business into areas such as reinforced steel, concrete crushing and a public airport. In 1994, they bought a…


Lying defamation defendant shot down by Sporting Shooters – $887,027.66 in damages: Moroney v Zegers [2018] VSC 448

For a short time in 2012, Karel Zegers was the Acting President of the Victorian branch of the Sporting Shooters Association of Australia (SSAAV).  His position on the Board was up for election in August that year and he decided to set up a website to run his campaign: shootersvictoria.com. He lost the election and…

sophie mirabella

Politician not so pushy – Sophie Mirabella wins $175,000: Mirabella v Price & Benalla Newspapers Pty Ltd [2018] VCC 650

Sophie Mirabella was the Member of the House of Representatives for the seat of Indi in rural Victoria from 2001 to 2013. In 2015, the Liberal Party pre-selected her once again to run in the 2016 election. Her opponent was independent, Cathy McGowan who had won the seat in 2013. The 2016 election was set…

Defamation Hall of Fame

The Classic defamation trial is always one for the ages. Here’s some of our favourites

Contributed to

Justin Castelan appeared in the following cases

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