Aussie politician sued over website

An Australian lawyer is attempting to shut down the website of an extremist member of parliament, claiming breaches anti-discrimination laws.

    Defiant: David Oldfield, with One Nation founder Pauline Hanson

    Melbourne solicitor Hisam Sidaoui is taking New South Wales MP David Oldfield, a representative of the extremist One Nation party, to the Victorian state Civil and Administrative Tribunal.
    Sidaoui claims the website breaches Victoria's Racial and Religious Tolerance Act.

    But Oldfield has responded by filing to have the case dismissed, labelling the allegations "vexatious and frivolous."
    Controversial website

    The lawyer issued a statement at the weekend, saying he decided to act because the website was "overtly offensive" and "vilifying in all aspects".
    Page headings include Islamic Terror in Australia, Muslim Racists Calling the Kettle Black, and Muslim Prayer Breaks Thin Edge of the Wedge.
    Sidaoui said the website claimed there was a higher rate of birth defects in Sydney's inner-western suburbs where there is a large Muslim population.
    "What's he saying ... that Muslims are genetically inferior?" he asked.

    Oldfield, who says One Nation no longer endorsed the site "but stood by everything on it", challenged Sidaoui to prove anything on it was false. 

    "Mr Sidaoui doesn't have to look at the site. If he is so offended by it, why does he keep looking at it?"

    David Oldfield
    One Nation Party

    He said the site was designed to inform Australians about Islam and terrorism. "Mr Sidaoui thinks the Australian government, the United States government, the British government and the Israeli government are terrorists," Oldfield claimed.
    "Mr Sidaoui doesn't have to look at the site. If he is so offended by it, why does he keep looking at it?"
    The case will be heard on 28 August, the same week that party founder, Pauline Hanson, is scheduled to be back in court on suspicion of electoral fraud.

    One Nation fraud

    Hanson is accused of falsely claiming almost $329,000 (A$500,000) in electoral funds, which were used to pay for the campaigns of 11 One Nation candidates who were elected to the Queensland state parliament.
    She grabbed headlines around the world after warning Australia was in danger of being "swamped by Asians" in her maiden speech as an independent MP to the national parliament, in the late 1990s.
    Using her sudden political fame to form the far-right One Nation party, Hanson rode a groundswell of support for her opposition to Asian immigration and welfare for Aborigines, and won a million votes in a 1998 election.

    Hanson has pleaded not guilty to all charges, as has co-founder David Ettridge. 
    Return of funding

    But a court ruled in 1999 that One Nation used supporters who were not fully paid members to fraudulently register the party in Hanson's home state of Queensland.

    The Queensland Electoral Commission has sought the return of the party funding. 
    Hanson unsuccessfully tried to resurrect her political career by standing as an independent in the New South Wales state election in March 2003. 

    SOURCE: Agencies


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