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Media Release: Meryl Dorey and the AVN – Another loss in court

September 16, 2013

The following message was sent to various journalists and media outlets today:

Meryl Dorey from the Australian Vaccination Network has failed in another of her attempts to use Apprehended Violence Orders to silence her critics.

In September 2012, Ms Dorey applied for three Apprehended Personal Violence Orders against people who had been critical of her anti-vaccination activities. One of the applications was settled with the consent of the defendant, who just wanted it to go away. The second was dismissed on August 22, with Ms Dorey ordered to pay significant costs to the defendant.

The third application, against Peter Bowditch, was dismissed in Lismore Local Court on April 26 this year, after no fewer than seven mentions in Ballina and Lismore Courts. Ms Dorey appealed to the District Court to have that decision overturned.

The appeal was withdrawn today in Lismore District Court, fifty-four weeks after the initial application was lodged and two days before the hearing was scheduled. This means that Ms Dorey has effectively delayed a resolution of this matter for almost four additional months. The withdrawal will be ratified when the Court sits on Wednesday, September 18.

From the start Ms Dorey had been misusing the AVO process to try to achieve something for which it was not intended. AVOs are to protect people from violence, not to prevent people from speaking. The hypocrisy of her position is obvious when you consider her frequent claims to be a suppressed champion of free speech. To her, speech should be free provided that she is doing the speaking, but she wants to deny that freedom to others.

A timeline for the matter plus copies of the parties' submissions to the Court can be found at

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