Ben Roberts-Smith To Appeal Defamation Defeat

Ben Roberts-Smith To Appeal Defamation Defeat

Victoria Cross winner and ex-soldier Ben Roberts-Smith is appealing the loss of his defamation lawsuit in which a judge decided that newspaper claims that he’d committed war crimes were ‘substantially true’. 

On Tuesday, Roberts-Smith filed an appeal against the findings of judge Justice Robert Besanko. 

This is a change in direction given his barrister previously gave no indication that the ex-soldier would be appealing Besanko’s findings that the newspapers had successfully proven that Roberts-Smith was a war criminal.

Roberts-Smith had said he was defamed in 2018 by Nine Media newspapers The Age and The Sydney Morning Herald plus the Canberra Times who claimed that he’d kicked an unarmed man off a cliff, and killed a prisoner before taking his prosthetic leg back home to be used as a drinking vessel. 

The mammoth trial ran over 110 days, included 41 witnesses and is estimated to have cost more than $25 million in legal fees.

Majority shareholder in Seven West Media, Stokes, funded the case through the public company at the beginning before transferring the liability to his private company Australian Capital Equity.

Seven covered the legal costs of the three witnesses whom needed to give evidence on behalf of Roberts-Smith.

In June, however, it was announced that the Former SAS soldier Ben Roberts-Smith had lost the defamation case.

Roberts-Smith stepped down from his role as managing director of Seven West Queensland the day after the trial. Seven announced his replacement, Todd Dickinson, two weeks ago, 




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ben roberts-smith defamation Nine Seven

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