Response to Federal Court dismissal of ABC case – Govt must rule out charging journalists

Greens Spokesperson for Media and Chair of the Senate Inquiry into Press Freedoms Senator Sarah Hanson-Young responded to the Federal Court’s dismissal of the ABC’s legal challenge against the validity of police warrants used to raid its Ultimo headquarters last year:

“Today’s court ruling over the ABC raids shows our press freedom laws are broken. We need proper protection for whistleblowers and journalists so the public know what’s really happening in our names and with our taxes. We have a right to know what the Government is up to.

“The Government should come out today and rule out charging the ABC journalists, and the News Corp journalists involved in other raids. The Attorney-General should stop playing games and tell the public what’s going on and explain why they are spending taxpayers money chasing whistleblowers who simply tell the truth.

“From the Afghan Files to the Sports Rorts, it’s clear the Morrison Government is more worried about their own embarrassment than they are about our security.

“Journalism is not a crime. And speaking up when the Government is engaged in covering up wrongdoing should not make whistleblowers criminals.

“If the law won’t protect journalists then we must have legislated safeguards to guarantee the freedom of the press and whistleblower protections. These protections must be independent of the government.”

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