Author Archives: Justin Castelan

Trkulja III not as good as the originals: Google Inc v Trkulja [2016] VSCA 333

By 2008, Indiana Jones had fought, flown and fallen through several great adventures: all against great odds, in the face of powerful empires and despite significant hurdles, he ploughed on… ultimately to victory. Then came Indiana Jones and the Crystal … Continue reading

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Strip club owner is no brothel madam: Hardie v Herald & Weekly Times [2016] VSCA 103

The plaintiff, Ms Raelene Hardie, was a part owner and manager of a strip club in rural Victoria called “Club Rawhide”. On 16 May 2013, the Herald Sun ran an article written by Andrew Rule, a journalist, on its front … Continue reading

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Barrister’s internet defamation: He fought the law and the law won: Dods v McDonald [2016] VSC 201

During the evening of 11 December 2008, Tyler Cassidy, a 15 year old boy had stolen two large knives from Kmart at Northcote Plaza Shopping Centre, near All Nations Park. He moved through the shopping centre, its shops and car … Continue reading

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Dank v Nationwide News Pty Ltd [2016] NSWSC 295. Number of days in Stephen Dank’s defamation trial – 20. Judgment Awarded – Priceless

Since 2013, the Australian sporting landscape has been dominated, not by any particularly amazing footballer, cricketer or athlete. No, it has been dominated by Stephen Dank – “sports scientist”. He is the man responsible for bringing into the Australian conscience … Continue reading

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Artists’ appeal upheld, record verdict set aside and re-trial ordered: Vakras v Cripps [2015] VSCA 193

In 2014, a gallery owner, Raymond Cripps was awarded a record $420,000 defamation verdict in the Victorian Supreme Court. The verdict was made by His Honour Justice Kyrou against two surrealist artists, Demetrios Vakras and Lee-Anne Raymond. They held an … Continue reading

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Hockey hoists Fairfax on its own placard: Hockey v Fairfax Media Publications Pty Ltd [2015] FCA 652

On 5 May 2014, Fairfax, through the Sydney Morning Herald, The Age and the Canberra Times, ran a series of articles about a Liberal Party fundraising entity called the North Sydney Forum. North Sydney is the seat held by Australia’s … Continue reading

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Crushed Rock damages ruled too soft on appeal: Jeffrey & Curnow v Giles [2015] VSCA 70

Jeffrey and Curnow were defamed by statements made by Virginia Giles on a website in 2011. The plaintiffs were directors of a company, Casacir Pty Ltd, which operates a quarry in the south of Victoria. The defendant’s company owned the … Continue reading

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CSI Lismore: German backpacker’s efforts to prevent publication of book all in vain: Moran v Schwartz Publishing Pty Ltd [2014] WASC 334

In early 2005, the plaintiff, a German National with a working visa in Australia, was travelling along the east coast of Australia in a campervan with his German girlfriend of 6 and a half years, Simone Strobel. By the time … Continue reading

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Facebook and Twitter damages music to teacher’s ears: Mickle v Farley [2013] NSWDC 295

Orange is a large rural town in Western New South Wales and its High School became a site for a landmark defamation verdict. Yes, this case happened a while ago, but in our new age of social media, an interesting … Continue reading

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Defendants’ go all-in: Plaintiff calls their bluff and wins the $340,000 pot: Polias v Ryall & Ors [2014] NSWSC 1692

The plaintiff and four defendants were poker players used to playing high stakes games: hands worth thousands of dollars. In the middle of 2012, the plaintiff and the first defendant went to Las Vegas for a tournament and shared a … Continue reading

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