O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors, especially Principal Lawyer, Peter O’Brien, are the “go to” firm for many prominent cases. Our lawyers are often sought out by the media for comment on the matters of the day. Here is news that we have been involved with in the Media in 2021. For previous news and media mentions, go to our 2018 page. Or, our 2019-2020 page.
We are happy to assist with your media enquiries. Contact us for interviews, information or expert opinions on criminal and civil matters on (02) 9261 4281 or by email at .
O’Brien Solicitors to appeal on behalf of client Shane Bazzi in Peter Dutton defamation case
December 20, 2021
Refugee advocate files appeal over Peter Dutton’s $35,000 defamation win. Shane Bazzi, through his lawyers at O’Brien Solicitors, has filed an appeal against a Federal Court decision ordering him to pay Defence Minister Peter Dutton $35,000 in damages over a defamatory tweet.The following may be behind a paywall for some people:
Neighbour mulls adding to William Tyrrell ‘suspects’ suing police
November 22, 2021
Peter O’Brien is quoted extensively in this article in The Australian where a neighbour of William Tyrrell considers suing police. Peter is already representing wrongly accused man Bill Spedding. The following may be behind a paywall:
Senior Solicitor Stewart O’Connell mentioned in Flowers defamation article
November 17, 2021
Terrance Flowers is suing Channel 7 for defamation over the Cleo Smith abduction. The following may be behind a paywall:
Peter O’Brien name-checked in Media Watch over Flowers defamation
November 5, 2021
Man wrongly identified as suspect in Cleo Smith abduction is represented by O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors
November 5, 2021
Terrance Flowers goes by the name Terrance W. B. Kelly on Facebook, using his mother’s last name. This name is close to that of Carnarvon man Terence Darrell Kelly, who has been charged with child abduction. 4 year old Cleo Smith was found alive this week after having been missing for 18 days. Channel 7 incorrectly identified Mr Flowers as the suspect in the case including full face pictures. Consequently he suffered abuse and threats and ended up in hospital with a panic attack. He has engaged our firm to sue for defamation.
Police officer in jail after assaulting woman, tampering with evidence
October 27, 2021
Peter O’Brien has a quote in a Canberra Times article about a police officer who assaulted a woman in a Liverpool pub. Subsequently the officer lied about the interaction. The former senior constable, Mark Anthony Follington, is now in prison. O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors will be suing the NSW Police Force on the woman’s behalf.
Liverpool assault by police officer ends with him in prison – Canberra Times
Criminal defence case sees Barker College student escape conviction for Pyrmont assault – October 6, 2021
Peter O’Brien appeared for a Barker College student who faced a charge of assault occasioning actual bodily harm in company. Magistrate Sue Duncombe sentenced the 17 year old to 12-months probation in Children’s Court after he pleaded guilty to the crime. However, she recorded no conviction.
Pyrmont assault accused secures no conviction – News.com.au
Defamation case of Dylan Voller prevails in High Court of Australia – September 8, 2021
Dylan Voller is suing for defamation several media outlets including the Sydney Morning Herald and The Australian. Today the High Court of Australia agreed that those media outlets were responsible for libellous comments by commenters on the Facebook pages that the news outlets maintain.
Media outlets lose High Court appeal over Facebook defamation ruling – Sydney Morning Herald
High Court decision will help clean up garbage on social media – Brisbane Times
O’Brien Criminal & Civil Solicitors’ takes on NSW Police over assault and false arrest of trans woman – May 28, 2021
Our civil lawyer team is suing NSW Police over an officer who was convicted of several counts relating to the unlawful assault and arrest of a woman in Liverpool.
O’Brien Criminal & Civil Solicitors’ Elliot Rowe defends stabbing accused – May 8, 2021
Criminal defence lawyer Elliot Rowe is defending a man who has pleaded not guilty to one count of reckless wounding on the Northern Beaches.
Collaroy alleged stabbing accused says it was self defence – The Daily Telegraph / Manly Daily (note this article is behind a pay wall)
O’Brien Criminal & Civil Solicitors to vigorously defend defamation suit from Peter Dutton – April 26-27, 2021
Defence Minister Peter Dutton is suing refugee activist Shane Bazzi over a tweet describing him as a “rape apologist”. O’Brien Solicitors civil team will be defending Mr Bazzi against the defamation claim.
Peter Dutton sues refugee activist for defamation over tweet – The Guardian Australia
Peter Dutton sues refugee advocate over ‘rape apologist’ tweet – Sydney Morning Herald
Peter Dutton sues Shane Bazzi over tweet – The Australian
O’Brien Criminal & Civil Solicitors represent Josh Massoud for defamation as he takes five media companies to court – April 27, 2021
O’Brien Criminal & Civil Solicitors representing Doctor suing Victoria Police for defamation and unlawful arrest – April 16, 2021
A Melbourne doctor claims he was defamed by Victoria Police after he was accused on a local Facebook page of stealing a bottle of rum.
Prasannan Ponganamparambile is taking legal action against the State of Victoria over a social media post published on Victoria Police’s Cardinia Eyewatch Facebook page in May last year.
O’Brien Solicitors statement on the matter was quoted extensively in an article about the matter in The Age. Senior Solicitor Stewart O’Connell, who specialises in defamation, is one of the solicitors acting for the doctor.
“Mr O’Connell said his client was never charged and that Victoria Police’s actions had a devastating impact on Dr Ponganamparambile and his family.
He said police should not post a person’s image on social media connecting them to a crime “without at least a reasonable investigation into the circumstances”.
“People are entitled to the protection of the presumption of innocence and for their privacy to be respected,” he said.”
O’Brien Criminal and Civil Solicitors has been engaged by someone in respect to Peter Dutton defamation action – April 7, 2021
Defence Minister Peter Dutton has launched an attack on critics on Twitter threatening to sue them for defamation.
O’Brien Solicitors statement on the matter was quoted extensively in an article about the threats in The Guardian.
“We have been engaged in relation to a defamation concerns notice served on an individual as a result of a tweet about Peter Dutton.
“We are not prepared, at this time, to discuss the specific details of the particular case.
“We are, however, firmly of the general view that politicians should not be wielding defamation laws as a sword to cut down the opinions and criticisms of individuals.
“People should have a broad freedom to criticise and express opinions about politicians without fear of reprisal, and politicians should have thick skins.”
O’Brien Solicitors argue defamation should be reserved for cases of “real risk of genuine damage to reputation”.
“That is not the case here. This was an expression of opinion on Twitter, a social media platform known for its freewheeling and informal banter in respect of matters of public interest, to an audience of no more than a few hundred people.”
Peter O’Brien quoted for an article on the ABC regarding payouts for child sexual assault in state custody – March 18, 2021
Peter O’Brien had a quote in an ABC article about sex assault compensation changes in NSW.
Solicitor Peter O’Brien said it was unfair to have one system for children in the community and another for those in custody.
“It was a horrendous piece of drafting to begin with to enable the state to avoid compensation payouts to those who’d been abused whilst in custody — in fact, in the care of the state as children,” he said.