The circumstances of Craig Thomson's appearance in court today and The Australian's "exclusive" story on it again point to something very dodgy in the State of Victoria and News Corps. Peter Wicks reports.
Today The Australian ran what they called an “Exclusive” story (see right) about what happened in an open court yesterday, regarding the ongoing Craig Thomson case. As usual, it misrepresented the proceedings of the court throughout.
Craig Thomson's matter was due to be heard again later this month, however given we have a Federal election on Saturday, this was not convenient for the prosecution, which is acting for the State of Victoria — or, rather, the Coalition Government that runs it.
Instead of waiting until the scheduled court date, another mention was requested of the court on Friday 30 August by the prosecution. This request was granted and the mention was held the next working day, which was Monday 2nd September — yesterday, at time of writing.
So, what new revelations emerged from this rushed through court mention?
What new evidence was presented?
What new claims were made?
But what the hell! It meant that News Ltd got to run another negative piece on Craig Thomson in an election week.
The whole thing seems like it was set up so that prosecutors could stand up and rant unchallenged and use the court as a place for political grandstanding.
In regards to the Craig Thomson defence, which seeks to have the matter dismissed before the facts of the charges even nneed to be discussed, Magistrate Charlie Rozencwajg was quoted in the article as saying:
"You can't have it both ways."
His accuser Kathy Jackson is under police investigation and has had charges laid on her by the Health Services Union and, according to sources, has allegedly been receiving psychiatric care. As for the allegations against Thomson, they have plummeted from over half a million dollars to under thirty thousand. Very consistent indeed.
As for the evidence against Thomson, well, it has only been consistent in its inconsistency.
And as for the “Exclusive” story in The Australian — how can something that happened in open court be an exclusive? Unless it was a closed court with only News Ltd from the media invited, which it wasn't, then anybody can waltz in and report on the case.
Are News Ltd really that desperate that they will claim anything as exclusive these days?
The story itself is just a rehash of the usual one-sided drivel printed by the paper in the past.
In fact, there is so much drivel in this article that it needed two people to put it together — and who better than Pia Ackerman and Ean Higgins.
It would seem that this court mention was simply staged for the News Ltd press by a politically compromised Victorian Prosecution Service so they could smear Craig Thomson once more before the election.
The story itself was so lame that the only two people to have any interest were Ackerman and Higgins. No other publication seems to have paid this story the slightest amount of interest. Some exclusive!
In fact, given News International's links with the police and Government in the UK, one might be entitled to question whether this meaningless "mention" for Craig Thomson was exclusive to News Ltd because it was entirely orchestrated for their benefit. And if you think that's ridiculous, then remember the highly staged media circus surrounding Craig Thomson's arrest.
What happened yesterday tells us more about News Ltd and the Liberal party than it does about Craig Thomson's case.
What a disgraceful display of perverted justice and compromised journalism.
Catch up on the full Jacksonville saga here. Follow Peter Wicks on Twitter @MadWixxy.