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Ministers Back Down

  • Ministers Back DownSupreme Court Of Victoria. Image: Nickbenanh Cc By-sa 3 0

Humble pie stops further action

Breaking: Three federal government ministers issue "unreserved apology" over comments made about Victorian judges handling of terrorists.


EARLIER: A Federal MP has accused Victorian judges of “standing in the corner of terrorists” - more concerned with rehabilitating extremists than protecting the community. But criticising courts comes at a price.

This now makes three Federal Ministers hauled into the Supreme Court to answer questions over contempt and has the potential to become a lesson to all politicians.

But Melbourne radio's Neil Mitchell doesn’t think Malcolm Turnbull has heeded the warning.

“The Prime Minister doesn’t get it,” he said.

“He told Tom Elliott yesterday you were able to question and criticise a judge’s decision.

“That is true – done respectfully and with fact and logic, you can.


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Mr Mitchell went on to say:

“But the point here is the decision has not been made. The Issues before court are for independent decision.

“No fear. No favour. No bowing to politicians.

“I suspect today the politicians – through their representative – will apologise and of course say they weren’t trying to influence the court.

“But they were clearly following a strategy to seek public approval for their stand on tough sentences, and there is public support.

“But we must, equally important, protect at all costs the independence of the courts.”

Since then the three Turnbull government ministers have withdrawn their comments but have not apologised, running the risk of contempt charges.