The controversial journalist, Shane Dowling, has been sent to prison for contempt of court for the second time in less than 12 months, this time over his public campaign to name and shame alleged “paedophile judges” and other members of the judiciary who he claims are corrupt.
Mr Dowling was sentenced to 18 months imprisonment by Justice Helen Wilson in the Supreme Court in Sydney on Wednesday, August 22.
The maverick journalist who publishes the popular Kangaroo Court of Australia website has been ordered to serve at least 13 months of the sentence.
Mr Dowling has now however called upon his supporters to contact members of the Australian government and other politicians to lobby for his release.
He argues he shouldn’t be in prison as he was only exercising his right to free speech and political communication.
“Raising allegations of judicial corruption is political communication and protected under the Australian constitution as per the 1997 High Court of Australia precedent Lange v ABC,” Mr Dowling said.
Mr Dowling says he was charged with contempt of court after he “repeated in court on the 3rd of February 2017 part of an article he had published and also for publishing an article about the contempt proceedings in breach of suppression orders”.
According to one witness who claims to have been present at the Supreme Court during Mr Dowling’s sentencing, the journalist was apparently mocked as “a loser” for his crusade for greater transparency in Australia’s justice system.
“There were times during the summing up when Shane was ridiculed by the judge, as a loser reduced to living in a boarding house. A loser who, due to his intransigence in defying suppression orders of the court, had rendered himself unemployed. She alluded to him as an unstable mental retard, deserving of no mercy by the court, but one to be made an example of for his defiance,” the witness stated.
“Reference was made by her to his previous incarceration of four months for a similar offence, by accusing him during this time, of attempting to manipulate the prison system by faking illness in order to have access to alternative milk supplies, while in the prison system.”
Mr Dowling has had a taste of freedom for less than a year, following a four month sentence for contempt of court served late last year.
In that case, Mr Dowling was sent to prison for defying court orders not to publish the names of two well-known female Network Seven employees who are alleged to have had sexual affairs with the media company’s boss, Tim Worner.
The suppression order was related to the public dispute involving former Seven employee Amber Harrison, whom Worner had carried out a cocaine-fuelled sexual affair with before a falling out.
True Crime News Weekly respects the general authority of the courts in Australia, but surely something is twisted when a journalist asking some questions is sent to prison for 18 months, while a high-profile paedophile enabler such as Adelaide’s now former Archbishop, Philip Wilson, is given a 12 month holiday at his sister’s home after being found guilty of covering up the ongoing sexual abuse of young children?
Perhaps Mr Dowling’s campaign against so-called “paedophile judges” – unhinged as it may seem to some – isn’t so far off the mark.
Mr Dowling’s friends and family will be looking after his popular website as he bides his time in prison.