Over the last year, I have come to you for help to fight for as many Aussies as possible, and I want to thank you for being there every single time.
Because of your generosity, we've taken on dozens of Fight The Fines cases across the country, and we have no plans of abandoning that campaign.
However, today, I need your help to fight for me.
In September 2020, I was brutally tackled and arrested by Victoria police. Why? Because I dared to practice journalism at a protest after our government locked down the entire state of Victoria in an unprecedented attack on our civil liberties.
Ten days later, thanks to the incredible support of our viewers, we launched a lawsuit against the police regarding that unlawful arrest and false imprisonment at StandWithAvi.com.
A lot has happened since then. I've faced numerous other run-ins with police while reporting in the field.
I've been arrested, handcuffed, thrown to the ground, thrown into the back of a police car, frog marched from Parliament, and had police try to intimidate me at my home in the middle of the night. (Even my bodyguard has been arrested during one of my recent reports).
With each incident, we've extended and expanded our lawsuit. The case has grown, and so have our costs.
Our lawsuit currently stands at an estimated $185,820, with $169,868 required in trust right away.
So now, as we head towards an expected two-week trial, I urgently need your help.
Each incident was a breach of my rights and could warrant their own lawsuits, but there's an obvious pattern when they're taken together.
The police know exactly who I am. And they know exactly what they're doing.
They're trying to stop me from doing my journalism, from telling the other side of the story.
And Dan Andrews is personally involved — I was fully accredited to attend a press conference at the Parliament in Melbourne when I was arrested there. One officer even told me they were specifically ordered to remove me by Andrews' assistant!
As shocking as it may sound, I didn't even receive this type of treatment from police when I was reporting from the frontlines of the Hong Kong protests.
And that's what really bothers me. The police aren't against journalists or journalists reporting from lockdown protests.
The police are simply against journalists who don't toe Dan Andrews' line.
Can you help me fight back?
I genuinely believe in our legal team. And I believe that what I've been doing this past year at Rebel News is just as legitimate a form of journalism as what they do at Nine, Seven, 10, SBS and ABC.
In fact, I think we're a lot more honest.
This lawsuit is about holding the state accountable for their overreach. It's about forcing the police to uphold the fundamental right of the press, once and for all — even for journalists critical of their behaviour.
You can read the lawsuit for yourself below, and if you believe in our fight, please help me pay the staggering legal bill right here (or click here to donate in AUD).
A court victory would send a message that we still have our civil liberties in Australia, and police cannot be errand-boys for Dan Andrews.
I don't want to make a prediction, but our legal team is excellent — you've seen them fight for many Aussies in our Fight The Fines project. I really think we have a good chance here. Please click here (or click here to donate in AUD) or visit StandWithAvi.com to help.
$169,868 is an awful lot of money. But I know that the Victoria Police are spending much more than that to shut me up. Please help if you can by clicking here (or clicking here to donate in AUD).
OTHER DONATION OPTIONS
Click here to donate in AUD (or currencies other than CAD)
Australian cheques can be made payable to “Smith & Tapper Lawyers” with “on trust for Yemini” written as the “memo”.
They can be posted to:
Smith & Tapper Lawyers
40/140 William Street
Melbourne VIC 3000
Deposit directly into lawyer's Trust Account
Bank: Commonwealth Bank Australia
Account Name: SMITH & TAPPER LAWYERS LAW PRACTICE TRUST ACCOUNT
BSB: 063 464
Account Number: 1097 9782
Please include your matter number “CV2001” as a reference.
Read the full lawsuit