Rebecca the Wrecker Wilson getting her just deserts

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Kim Jong Dan
Staff member
Tipping Member
Rebecca the wrecker faces the sin bin as Bulldogs boss sues for defamation

By Stephen Gibbs
July 15, 2005

Loggerheads … Wilson and Noad.
Photos: Ben Rushton and Steve Christo

Spitting, gouging and squirrel-gripping have all been taken off the paddock in rugby league. Now a club chief executive has hauled a sideline sniper before the judiciary.

Bulldogs boss Malcolm Noad has begun defamation action against the sports commentator Rebecca Wilson in the NSW Supreme Court, seeking aggravated damages for attacks upon his name.

Mr Noad alleges Wilson has repeatedly and maliciously trashed his reputation with lies and scandalous assaults on his credit in a vicious personal campaign.

The prospect of this action being heard in open court will make powerful sports and media figures in Sydney drool. Mr Noad was once Wilson's boss at News Ltd, where he was a director and held posts including managing director of the publisher of The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Telegraph, Nationwide News.

Among Mr Noad's reasons for claiming aggravated damages in his suit is "[Wilson's] act in exploiting her personal relationship with a senior executive of [News Ltd] in order to revenge herself upon [Mr Noad]".

Mr Noad also claims aggravated damages over what he says was Wilson's tape recording of a telephone conversation between the pair, which was published on May 6 in The Daily Telegraph.

The two have been at loggerheads publicly for most of the past 18 months, since allegations were aired that Bulldogs players raped a 20-year-old woman at Coffs Harbour in February last year.

Mr Noad was NRL chairman and a News Ltd director when the rape claim was first made. He announced his appointment as Bulldogs chief executive in early April.

Before he officially took up that position, Mr Noad met Deputy Police Commissioner Dave Madden to discuss reports that the rape inquiry had revealed evidence of a Bulldogs player being involved in drugs.

It was Mr Madden's release to Mr Noad of information - a player's secretly recorded telephone conversation - that has Mr Madden facing potential criminal charges of breaching the Telecommunications (Interception) Act.

After it became public that Mr Madden and four other officers faced censure over the meeting with Mr Noad, Wilson criticised Mr Noad while revisiting the original rape allegations that had resulted in no charges being laid.

Mr Noad published his response to Wilson in a letter on the club's website. Wilson retaliated in a May 7 radio broadcast on Triple M and in the Telegraph on May 14.

Mr Noad claims Wilson defamed him by suggesting he knowingly lied, caused Bulldogs supporters to send her death threats and obscene messages, and that he conducted a hate campaign against her.

"In consequence of [Wilson's] publication of the two matters, [Mr Noad] has been greatly injured in his occupation, credit, and reputation; and has been brought into public scandal, odium and contempt," Mr Noad's statement of claim


Kim Jong Dan
Staff member
Tipping Member
I just thought that as a reporter she was protected by freedom of the press and thus could not be sued for defamation...however the news paper can!


UFO Hunter
You can't defame a person no matter who you are. Unless you are being honest which is then not defamation.

Im not sure who this rebecca wilson is, we dont get any of her stuff up here but if she's half as bad to the game as you guys say she is, I hope she gets done.


Yeah Dan, your right and I don't like Noads chances.
Unless Rebecca has a pretty shocking legal team I'd say she would be sitting pretty on this one.
On the other hand if Noad gets hold of the same lawyers that manoeuvred the Bulldogs out of those Coffs Harbour allegations, there's no telling what they're capable of...

Canteen Worker

First Grader
This is all about bad-mouthing her rather than actually getting to court.

It's hard to imagine how her reputation could be worse though!!!


Kim Jong Dan
Staff member
Tipping Member
CW I agree. it wont help her reputation and being the ex boss of a paper, and media outlet he would be well aware of the legalities, i would say he either has grounds to actually sue her or he is just trying for a name tarnishing act...either way I dont care, it shows the wrecker for what she is


Kim Jong Dan
Staff member
Tipping Member
by the way less than 30 posts for my major achievement of 10,000 posts


I just thought that as a reporter she was protected by freedom of the press and thus could not be sued for defamation...however the news paper can!

From my small law course for my software engineering degree (we had to do one) we covered defamation. Here is the definition:

To succeed in defamation the plaintiff must prove (on the balance of
– 1. The defendant made a defamatory statement*
– 2. The statement may be understood as referring to the plaintiff (objective
test); and
– 3. The statement was communicated to 1 or more persons

A “defamatory statement” is:
a direct or implied statement (spoken, words, pictures) which tends to injure the
plaintiff’s reputation in the estimation of others
(objective test; “general community standards”)

There are two types of defamation:
– “slander” - transient defamation (words, public speech)
– “libel” - permanent defamation (written, radio, TV, movies)

And the defence:

Justification (truth)
– the D must prove that the statement was true
– in some states the D must also prove that it was in the public
benefit (NSW, ACT, Qld, Tas)

Fair comment on a matter of public interest
– extends to expressions of opinion only
– must be “fair” (honest)
– must be based on facts which are true
– must be on a matter of public interest (eg. political commentators,
film reviewers rely on this defence etc).

As this is in NSW Noad's team must show that she has caused him damage by her statements (libel I imagine as it is in print).

For her to defend she must either show that it is true and in the public's interest (cause she is in NSW) or that it is fair comment (a common media defence) which depending on what teh atual claim is about it may not count as a matter of opinion based on facts.

So go Noadie.


Kim Jong Dan
Staff member
Tipping Member
Thats pretty much spot on. We use to have a sticky post about this

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