YouTuber ordered to front federal court over videos of Bruce Lehrmann defamation trial | Australian media

A YouTuber has been ordered to front the federal court after an account he allegedly operates posted multiple videos online of Bruce Lehrmann’s defamation trial.

Justice Michael Lee has ordered Glenn Logan to face the court in person and explain why contempt proceedings should not be commenced against him.

During Lehrmann’s defamation trial in November and December, Lee raised concerns that the live stream of the federal court proceedings was being unlawfully rebroadcast on an anonymous YouTube account, named Feminism Debunked.

As the five-week hearing concluded, Lee ordered YouTube’s owner, Google, to reveal the identity of the account’s owner. With that information disclosed, Lee on Thursday ordered Logan to front court.

“The court orders that: Mr Glenn Logan appear in person before the federal court of Australia at 9.30am on 13 February 2024,” the order states.

Logan must “show cause … as to why proceedings for contempt should not be instituted against him”, the order states.

Logan has not, at this stage, been charged with contempt.

The court order cites nine YouTube videos posted on the Feminism Debunked channel. Only two of the videos remain accessible online, the remainder appear set to private.

One of those that remain says YouTube has “predictably removed all but one of my videos from the Lisa Wilkinson defamation trial, that’s the bad news”.

The channel, which has just over 3,500 subscribers, hosts hundreds of videos attacking women and condemning feminism, anti-violence campaigns and people being “woke”. Particular targets include sexual assault survivor and former Australian of the year Grace Tame, Brittany Higgins and journalist Lisa Wilkinson.

Many of the videos contain audio of a person identified as “Glenn” calling into rightwing radio talkback shows condemning women’s sport, women in the Liberal party and censorship of men’s rights activists.

Lehrmann is suing Wilkinson and Network Ten over an interview with Higgins broadcast on The Project in 2021, which Lehrmann claims conveyed the imputation he raped Higgins in Parliament House in 2019.

The program did not name Lehrmann, but his defamation action claims he was identifiable in it.

Lehrmann has consistently maintained his innocence. During the criminal proceedings commenced against him in the ACT supreme court, he pleaded not guilty to one charge of sexual intercourse without consent. The trial was initially abandoned due to juror misconduct.

In December, prosecutors ultimately dropped the charge against Lehrmann, saying a new criminal trial would pose an “unacceptable risk” to Higgins’s health.

Lehrmann’s defamation action against Network Ten and Wilkinson ran for five weeks in the federal court in Sydney. Lee has reserved his decision in the matter and is set to hand down a judgment in the new year.


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