On Melbourne Cup Day last November, shortly after Melbourne had come out of lockdown, Rob Bridger, a hard-working father of three, made plans to go out for pizza with his family.
Rob arrived early and decided to wait on a bench for others to join him.
He adhered to all the pandemic rules at the time and did everything he was supposed to. He was sitting alone, wearing a mask, and was within 25 km from his home.
But suddenly, a protest kicked off right beside him!
Rob had no clue what the protest was about but quickly found himself surrounded by people.
To contain the protest, the police implemented a controversial tactic known as kettling — a method of crowd control that often results in the arrest of innocent bystanders.
As people converged on him, Rob was hit with pepper spray. And since he was trapped inside the crowd, the police arrested and fined him $1,652 because they claimed he was part of the protest!
I couldn't believe Rob's story when I heard it.
Rob just wanted to have a quiet meal with his family. The last thing he expected was to be punished for something he didn't do.
We refuse to allow the state to trample on the rights of Australians like this.
That's why I offered Rob help through our Fight The Fines initiative. That's our civil liberties project where, with the help of our viewers, we hire lawyers to defend ordinary Australians against their coronavirus fines in court.
The best part? That help comes free of charge thanks to the generous support of our viewers who have donated at FightTheFines.com.au.
Paying a team of lawyers to defend Rob will be very costly. It will undoubtedly cost us more to fight these fines than to pay them.
But we're doing this on principle. The only way to defend ourselves against these bullies is by standing up to them. We're not just going to roll over and accept their police state tactics.
If you have already donated to our Fight The Fines campaign, thank you. There's no way this project can succeed without your financial support.
And if you haven't had a chance to donate yet, there's no better time than now to contribute — just click here.
Dozens of clients have joined our Fight The Fines initiative since we launched it last year, and we have already beaten several cases.
But there's still plenty of work left to do. Can we count on your support?
The mainstream media will never tell Rob's story — it just doesn't suit their narrative. But Rob isn't the only one to be unfairly targeted by these pandemic rules. We have dozens of other stories just like his that we will continue to tell until everyone knows the truth. To help us crowdfund Rob's legal fees, please click here or visit FightTheFines.com.au.