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Federal Government

SLITHERER SQUISHED: Federal Court annihilates James Ashby and his lawyer of sleaze

JamesashbygrubJames Ashby’s dubious sexual harassment case against former Speaker Peter Slipper was always flawed to the core and a blatant abuse of process.

And now the Federal Court has thrown it out, even before it had a hearing, recognising the inherently dodgy nature of the claim.

The judgment doesn’t miss Ashby, sets out his perfidy in clinical, brutal terms.

Justice Rares was also scathing about Ashby’s high-profile lawyer Michael Harmer.

For these reasons, I am of opinion that Mr Ashby’s and Mr Harmer’s pleading of 2003 allegations was scandalous, oppressive and vexatious and an abuse of Mr Harmer’s professional obligations to the Court as a lawyer.

He’s not the first, and he won’t be the last, but Ashby clearly misused the proper processes of our legal system to character assassinate a foe he couldn’t attack any other way. There is strong evidence he was put up to it.

Michaelharmer

The circumstances where former Speaker Peter Slipper prevailed were nothing less than extraordinary, he was self-represented at least at the end, although not before Maurice Blackburn, the HSU friendly law firm stitched him for hundreds of thousands of dollars in fees.

Ashby says he’ll appeal but it does seem unlikely that his hidden benefactors will continue to sink even more money into what can be reasonably described as perjury-powered litigation from a man now widely seen as an abuser of court process, a sneak, a liar and a dirty little egomaniac.

There’s a lot we don’t yet know about why Ashby brought his spurious case, who paid for it and why but it seems likely to come out any day now.

Ashby is now essentially unemployable and will become an increasingly surly, bitter figure who will explode like Mount Vesuvius should his litigation benefactors eventually turn off the tap. Which they inevitably will, it’s just a question of when.

We won’t rehash every aspect of the James Ashby saga but it’s worth noting he threatened to sue VEXNEWS at one point for breaching his human rights in that we questioned the nature of his case against Slipper and his character as a man.

Ashby shall be forever known as a professional perjurer and smirking sociopathic jackal.

Some of our past tales on Ashby make it clear that while some in the media were willing to swallow the dirty diva’s fantasies hook, line and sinker, VEXNEWS could see right through him.

POLITICS OF PERSONAL DESTRUCTION: Slipper quits, government reaps what it sowed
October 10, 2012
Former Speaker Peter Slipper has been treated very shabbily indeed by both sides of politics. Now he’s resigned, we hope he torments the lot of them.

SHADOW BOXING: James Ashby’s $500,000+ legal bill is the dirtiest little secret in Australian politics
October 9, 2012
James Ashby won’t tell us who’s funding his sexual harassment litigation against Speaker Peter Slipper. WIth his legal costs estimated at $500,000, it’s time for answers. We also look at the sheer folly of $50,000 in taxpayers’ funds being paid to the gutter-snipe whose own paid shrink thinks behaved in a “provocative and sexualised” manner in the workplace. UPDATE: Sources tell VEXNEWS that the number Ashby’s lawyers cited in discussions with the Commonwealth as having been expended on legal costs is $1.2 million. Even allowing for traditional padding, that’s a huge amount for anyone to fund.

WITH FRIENDS LIKE THESE: Latte-sipper Steve Lewis reflects on old chums in Rozelle
June 16, 2012
When in Rozelle, Canberra Press Gallery Daily Telegraph heavy-hitter (once legendary for being the highest paid student union official of his time) Steve Lewis favours Il Piave as his local latte provider or somewhere suspiciously close to the up-market eatery …

LIFE OF THE PARTY: James Ashby accused of procuring unwitting young men for HIV positive millionaire mate for pleasure palace “partying”
May 7, 2012
Speaker Peter Slipper’s accuser James Ashby has some serious credibility issues he needs to explain. We dig deep in Sunshine Coast muck to shed new light on the character of this devious and dangerous young man.

THE TIME-BOMB: Liberal gift set to be a toxic Trojan Horse
May 7, 2012
The conduct of a high-priced Sydney law-firm engaged by James Ashby, an LNP identity who has made serious claims against Speaker Peter Slipper, has been questioned by the Fin Review’s Marcus Priest.

BRISBANE BUZZES: Was James Ashby paid $50,000 to make his sexual harassment complaint against Slipper?
April 30, 2012
Political insiders are well aware of widespread talk that Speaker Peter Slipper’s harassment/Cabcharge accuser James Ashby was paid $50,000 (with promise of free legals) to initiate Federal Court proceedings against him. Ashby – and those associated with him – could be getting into all sorts of trouble if it’s true.

BLOWBACK: Peter Slipper saga might end up bad news for the Coalition
April 23, 2012
Many think there’s a lot more to the James Ashby ambush of Speaker Peter Slipper than meets the eye. The Coalition will be hoping their young bomb-thrower stays solid. If Ashby was encouraged by Slipper’s political rivals to dish the dirt, they are taking a big punt the flamboyant young man won’t blab.

COINCIDENCE? Kathy Jackson’s Sydney lawyers are the same as Peter Slipper’s sex harassment accuser’s

Discussion

Comments are disallowed for this post.

  1. Don’t worry Jimmy you can [deleted[ into my gaping [deleted] again.

    Posted by Pissy Chryne | December 12, 2012, 18:28
  2. brough needs to be disendorsed and brandis needs to be dumped. They are both liabilities with poor judgment.

    Posted by A peek behind the closet door | December 12, 2012, 18:56
  3. Our Watergate!

    Posted by Angela Moore | December 12, 2012, 19:41
  4. Hey cop this.

    “Mr Danby also used his 730 word piece to criticise Senator Carr’s NSW right faction and the quality of its membership.”
    Read more: http://www.canberratimes.com.au/opinion/political-news/im-no-tiberius-carr-20121212-2b8lo.html#ixzz2EpgEjSfD.

    Fuckin’ Rich. Who in particular is the great mind from the Mexican Right?

    Q: When, historically, was the last time the ALP was hanging off the brains trust from Vic?

    Waiting…

    Posted by Cheshire Cat | December 12, 2012, 21:38
  5. Ashby and his LNP backers were hoping to drag the Slipper gate affair out until the next election. Clearly the Court saw things differently and they have acted decisively in dismissing the vexatious claim brought against Peter Slipper.

    Justice Rares did not mix words, anyone who reads the judgement can see there was no room for doubt. It was a clear case of misuse and abuse of the Courts.

    With the case dismissed Ashby and his backers need to appeal the decision, not to seek justice but to silence their critics and avoid the matter blowing up in their faces before the next Federal Election. The judgement of the Court vindicates Peter Slipper and condemns Tony Abbott and others who had sought to use the unfounded allegations to smear and tarnish the Gillard Labor Government bringing the parliament into disrepute.

    Abbott like Ashby has been tainted by the false allegations, They have proven to be opportunists who will go to any length to pervert the course of justice and misuse our legal system to advance their personal political agenda.

    The Christmas holiday period will provide the LNP with some cover but this matter will again surface when the Parliament next meets.

    In a just world Tony Abbott should be facing the Parliamentary privileges committee for his own misuse and abuse of process. He should be condemned and shunned by the main stream media who were complicit in Abbott’s deceit and Ashby’s misuse of Court proceedings

    This issue and the manner in which the opposition have pursued their attack effect all of us not just Peter Slipper. It demonstrates a serious lack of judgment on Abbott’s behalf and brings into question Abbott’s credibility and suitability to be leader.

    Posted by Abbott's credibility in question | December 12, 2012, 23:31
  6. Brough has always been a grubby immoral ineffective character, just ask his squaddies from his Military days.

    Posted by anon | December 12, 2012, 23:39
  7. This dirty trick campaign against Peter Slipper has all the hallmarks of Julian Sleezel on it.

    Sleezel works at the Liberal Federal office but was given the boot from Victoria when his staff at 104 were undermining Red Ted before he became Premier.

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | December 12, 2012, 23:40
  8. If Brough is disendorsed b4 the next election I predict 2 milliseconds will pass b4 one W. Roy *sheets his britches*. He’d have to be worried abt a warhorse like Brough. Even if its in his paranoid dreams :-)

    Posted by Anonskeet | December 13, 2012, 0:35
  9. Meanwhile that old horse lover and Gillard-hater Michelle Grattan writes about a ‘tattered slipper’. How droll. Something one would expect from a Howard-loving old hack.

    Earlier this year Grattan had the following to say”Gillard’s belated change of position is made even less convincing because she has not been willing to acknowledge her own past lack of judgment and her trampling of propriety.
    Defending Slipper last week, she pointed to what Labor had been able to do with the extra number gained by his defection. But the Slipper deal was always grubby politics.
    And when Gillard talks about Australians expecting ”the highest standards”, what are they to make of Anthony Albanese last week pre-empting the police investigation by declaring Slipper cleared of the criminal ”

    Maybe Grattan should follow her own advice and fall on her sword. The sleazy manipulation of the legal system by the LNP is clearly OK for Grattan. Grattan insults the reasoned findings of a Federal Court judge. Grattan accused Gillard of ‘trampling of propriety’ and yet she finds nothing wrong with the LNP’s trashing of the legal system. Grattan’s two-faced hypocrisy is breath-taking.

    Posted by Matilda | December 13, 2012, 8:51
  10. no wonder Tony Abbott flew off to Afghanistan – their is less flak there

    Posted by the Insider | December 13, 2012, 9:06
  11. no wonder tony Abbott flew of to Afghnaistan – a lot less flak there!

    Posted by the insider | December 13, 2012, 9:21
  12. Ps There is an excellent article on the sad state of ‘journalism’ by Jonathan Green: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2012-12-13/green-the-politics-of-mutually-assured-destruction/4424336?WT.svl=theDrum

    Posted by Matilda | December 13, 2012, 9:31
  13. What did the judgement say about the behaviour of the reporter?

    Posted by gannet | December 13, 2012, 11:26
  14. Let’s see whether it is appealed. As a former federal public servant, I would just make the point that Slipper’s emails/texts sent to his staff memeber were a disgrace and would possibly end in dismissal if it had occurred in the Australian Public Service. But it seems his Honour has no problem with these messages sent by Slipper to a subordinate. I note that Rares has had a major ruling/decison overturned on appeal recently. Rares was also basically saying the journo – Steve Lewis – lied (about the “got him” statement). Might hear more from Lewis on that too.

    Posted by Publius | December 13, 2012, 11:34
  15. Its nice to see that Abbott and other MP’s soon are visiting the troops in Afghanistan for Ramadam but its a bit late. Ramadam is in October I think

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | December 13, 2012, 13:00
  16. Publius are you related to Lewis perchance?

    Posted by sue | December 13, 2012, 14:11
  17. What makes this even more interesting is that Judge Rares was appointed by a Liberal Government.

    Posted by Taliban fan | December 13, 2012, 14:43
  18. maybe you should read the judgement Publius. the facts as outlined by Rares speak volumes, although I do understand that, as an ex-public servant, doing some actual research might prove too taxing: http://www.judgments.fedcourt.gov.au/judgments/Judgments/fca/single/2012/2012fca1411

    Posted by voice of reason | December 13, 2012, 15:44
  19. The Judge tell’s Ashby he’s a bad boy, but no penalty.

    Slipper harassed out of being Speaker and publicly shamed.

    Who’s the real winner?

    Posted by Anonymous | December 13, 2012, 18:11
  20. I like many have read the text messages and find the decision extraordinary. If Rares dished it out to Ashby and his Lawyer, what about Roxon???

    I think Rares may cop a serve from the Appellate Judges.

    Posted by ? | December 13, 2012, 19:44
  21. Hey Cheshire

    We all know that if you aren’t in Sydney then you are camping!
    Keep on smilin’

    Posted by Dunrootin' | December 13, 2012, 20:52
  22. We should make a trophy, call it the Godwin Grech/James Ashby Cup.

    The joint winners for 2012 are : Tony Abbott, Julie Bishop, Malcom Turnbull, Mal Brough, Chrissy Pine, Senator ..what’s his name the Shadow Attorney General?? Maybe we can also throw in a few more Libs and Nats? Any more suggestions??

    Posted by Jame | December 13, 2012, 21:36
  23. ROFL.

    Goodbye Slipper… goodbye PM Gillard…. goodbye ALP federal government.

    The shrill voices from the ALP, demanding that Brough be dumped as a candidate, remind me of the death dance of a blow fly, flat on its back, wings and legs madly flapping, after being sprayed with some mortein.

    All the silly flapping about, all the ridiculous calls made by senior minister….. none of this will change the ALP’s fate – being smashed at the next election.

    Carry on.

    Posted by Anonski | December 13, 2012, 23:21
  24. Ashby so deserves a good old Aussie poofta bashing. The truth is he is a dirty shirt lifting back door penetrating faggot, who has been encouraged by that pillow biter MP from Sturt.

    Posted by Ossie One | December 13, 2012, 23:59
  25. How embarrassing. How could Senator Brandis, who purports to be the Lord Almighty when it comes to his so-called superior intelect and understanding of the Law, get it so wrong? This is the man who would have us all believe he has the ability to become the nation’s chief law officer. The distastefully pompous Senator Brandis has almost single handedly managed wipe out all of the gains the Liberal Party has made on Gillard this year. Tony Abbott should sack him. If you need any further evidence of the inability of Senator Brandis to grasp even the most simple understanding of the law on the same level as that of any first year law student, then it would be worth aquainting oneself with this damning assessment of Senator Brandis’s ability, or lack thereof, by Law Professor Alex Steel. http://www.abc.net.au/unleashed/2857018.html

    Posted by John | December 14, 2012, 5:07
  26. Should Brandis be forced to apologise & if not be asked to resign?

    Posted by angela moore | December 14, 2012, 12:44
  27. Australian conspiracies are lame ….

    Posted by wtf | December 14, 2012, 13:01
  28. ROFL.

    Goodbye Slipper… goodbye PM Gillard…. goodbye ALP federal government.

    The shrill voices from the ALP, demanding that Brough be dumped as a candidate, remind me of the death dance of a blow fly, flat on its back, wings and legs madly flapping, after being sprayed with some mortein.

    All the silly flapping about, all the ridiculous calls made by senior minister….. none of this will change the ALP’s fate – being smashed at the next election.

    Carry on.

    Posted by Anonski | December 13, 2012, 23:21

    Oh yes. And if the Libs have the good sense to change the leader to Turnbull, it will be carnage for Labor in 2013. In fact they’ll be vaporised as they bleat and whine about misogyny.

    Posted by Anonymous | December 14, 2012, 14:57
  29. What ever Anonymous is smoking I want some to!

    Posted by It_Seems | December 14, 2012, 17:15
  30. Anonski & Anonymous must be sharing the same joint.

    Posted by The Pope | December 14, 2012, 17:19
  31. Ashby has been ordered to pay Slippers considerable costs.

    I reckon that is a penalty considering the moron media claimed loudly that Slipper would be sent bankrupt and be out of office because of it.

    Posted by Marilyn | December 15, 2012, 6:32
  32. The Israeli extreme right wing Foreign Minister has resigned after being charged for being crook – ha ha ha.

    He is an ignorant bigot of Soviet background who is a good candidate for gaol rather than in parliament.

    Posted by Adrian Jackson | December 15, 2012, 18:47
  33. That Neanderthal of ‘journalism’ and horse-whisperer Michelle Grattan has spoken — voters support Brough! Someone must be slipping some funny mushrooms into her oats. They voted for Berlusconi in Italy and even with his convictions they may do it again. Votes do not necessarily equate with innocence

    Poor Michelle is spending too much time with her nags. They’ve tarted up her picture over there at the Age, however, one is still tempted ask Michelle, why the long face?

    Posted by Matilda | December 15, 2012, 20:08
  34. Must admit Adrian you are right those Zionist Kikes are evil and dishonest the sooner Israel is a black smoldering ruin the better.

    Posted by Dan Lewis | December 15, 2012, 22:51
  35. Brough has always been a two faced turd. Ashby is a poor used soul, an ego the size of Jeff Kennett’s but the political ability of Kath or Kim. He’s probably guilty of sniffing a few seats in his time. Probably had his sniffed too.

    Posted by Roy Tuswell Seat Sniffer | December 16, 2012, 6:25
  36. Dan Lewis you are right.

    Posted by Heinz Guderian | December 16, 2012, 16:09
  37. James could always apply for a job with Christopher Pyne I am sure he would love to have him on-board as a member of his personal staff.

    Posted by Pyning for Ashby | December 16, 2012, 18:39
  38. My door is always open for you Ashby, please use my back door as you are more always welcome in that way.

    Posted by Pissy Chryne | December 16, 2012, 20:42
  39. Where is that rag the Australian on this matter. Imagine if Ashby was involved in this shit with the ALP against a Lib. Their bias and hypocrisy is on vivid display. Abbott,Brough, Pyne, Ashby Brandis et al, scum of the earth. IF an appeal occurs it has no chance of success. One hopes unemployable Ashby sells his story. He is grubby enough to do it methinks.The aforementioned must all be feeling of a tightening of the sphincter not felt since High School.

    Posted by Reggie | December 17, 2012, 12:34
  40. Ashby and his little mates like brough and abbott – you are dispicable little grubs

    Posted by Scrubber | December 17, 2012, 12:52
  41. Marilyn.
    I have had to reinvent myself but you are still a breath of fresh air in a seedy toxic environment

    Posted by Scrubber | December 17, 2012, 13:50
  42. The sexual picadilloes of MPs and their staffers brings an endless array of stories which Vexnews seems to delight in.They should be bound and published – longer than war and peace, I imagine, but alot more interesting (not).

    Any views as to who would be in Chapter one?

    Posted by Anon | December 17, 2012, 18:28
  43. Can Slipper now sue Ashby and co for damages ?

    Posted by Anonymous | December 17, 2012, 18:35
  44. Anonymous, “Can Slipper now sue Ashby and co for damages ?”
    Would that ‘co’ be News Ltd, all those Front page face altering rat images come to mind.

    Posted by sue | December 18, 2012, 6:53
  45. I hope no one finds my text message to hunky Ashby. I only did it as I’d love to get into Mal’s pants.

    Posted by Pissy Chryne | December 18, 2012, 7:46
  46. Dear Anon surely we must start with Pyne.

    Posted by Reggie | December 18, 2012, 14:25
  47. Oh if Slipper is such an angel put him back in the Speaker’s chair.

    Posted by Anonymous | December 18, 2012, 21:58
  48. Maybe Pyne.

    Or Vexnews regulars state MPs ie Dirty Donna, Wenchy, D (2) and RDR.

    Then Teddy Boy has been known to throw a leg or two in the past.

    Or Ex MP Craig Langdon and his entourage of staffers and volunteers.

    THat is already at least 4 chapters of War and Peace.

    Posted by Anon | December 18, 2012, 22:26
  49. Read that Slipper is bringing an application for indemnity costs against that lawyer Harmer – he really screwed this case and his reputation is now damaged at least as bad as petes’.
    About $400 – 4500,000. wealthy lawyers who abused the process – serves him rigjht.

    Posted by Scrubber | December 20, 2012, 14:09
  50. when does Brough get his – shit I hope he loses the seat of Fisher. Basically I hope the LNP retain just not with the tainted, fibber Brough. He is one dispictable character

    Posted by Scrubber | December 21, 2012, 10:22
  51. Scrubber counts as well as Swanny. $400 – $4,500,000.00! That sure is a huge fee range. Better keep cleaning bedpans, Scrubber.

    Posted by anon2 | December 21, 2012, 12:15
  52. Great to see that the dirty little scheming grub is still maintaining his fine track record of abuse of process by lodging a claim with FWA today. Why the hell do taxpayers have to foot the bill for this ridiculous farce?

    Posted by wothers | December 21, 2012, 12:21
  53. DEAN MIGHELL ALSO IS A GRUB….NEXT TO GO.

    Posted by jimmy | December 21, 2012, 13:13
  54. The little weasel has indicated that he will appeal the Federal Court decision and make a claim to Fair Work Australia. The question is why Ashby and his little mate have not been charged for lying about their sick leave application and stealing pages from Slipper’s diary?

    Posted by Matilda | December 21, 2012, 14:08
  55. The question is

    Since Fair Work Australia failed to stitch up Thomson, why do Ashby and his backers think it will be of any use to them now?

    (see Jacksonville saga at Independant Australia)

    Posted by James Adelaide | December 22, 2012, 22:10
  56. For everyone’s knowledge about interlocking power plays and relationships,

    Slipper beat Clive palmer for fisher preselection 1983
    Slipper lost to David Russell qc in groom preselection 1989
    Slipper sacked mark mcardles wife Judy in 1998

    Posted by Ash | December 23, 2012, 15:57
  57. Fatty please call me I need to ask a favour I’d rather discuss in person.

    Posted by McPerton | December 23, 2012, 22:38
  58. PAYBACK MUCH?!?!?!?!

    Posted by It_Seems | December 23, 2012, 23:19
  59. Is Scott Ryan the champion meat pie eater of all time? Even beats Jamie Briggs and Kelly O’Dwyer…and that’s saying something.

    Posted by Pedro | December 24, 2012, 15:55
  60. What about me?

    Posted by Alex Hawke | December 26, 2012, 14:57
  61. None of this matters coz the coalition will lose next election anyways — just a couple too many hard right completely uninspiring, unimaginative nutters who give loud annoying white noise speeches as if they have been raised in a declining fish market in a town that the world has forgotten.
    Still have no idea how the party has hung onto at least one of their front row team. Brough and Brandis are gold performers compared to a couple of others. One of them loves to disrespectfully raise her voice at her mother at the airport, as if its some kind of a backward village.All class…

    Posted by distraction | December 27, 2012, 23:09
  62. I note ome of the two being floated by Herald Sun’s scribe James Campbell for promotion by Ted Baillieu is Nick Wakleing .

    I then rolled around the floor laughing my head off.

    Posted by Anon | December 29, 2012, 0:19
  63. Rebuilding the wall, let the juniors through

    Posted by Geof | December 31, 2012, 0:41
  64. Happy New Year! I am having a big one with all my friends at the Laird Hotel tonight.

    Posted by Dan Lewis | December 31, 2012, 18:30