Legal watchdog moves to cancel tower lockdown lawyer’s licence11th April 2021
The lawyer and her Preston law firm Advocate Me had been seeking clients for a class action that includes people affected by any form of detention, mandatory vaccination, business closures, residential aged care isolation, cross-border rules, contact tracing, compulsory testing and various other measures.
Ms Teffaha said she intends to contest the action from the Victorian Legal Services Board.
She said if she loses her licence it will not affect the class action and she has written a whistleblower complaint against the legal watchdog for what she considers to be the targeting of her litigation.
“If they cancel my licence my clients will simply instruct someone else,” she said.
She said she has never had any client complain about her.
Ms Teffaha has at different times offered criticism on social media of government programs and institutions, including a dispute with members of the judiciary. She said her previous activism includes advocating for child sexual abuse and family violence survivors, government transparency and whistleblowers.
A senior member of the Family Court of Australia, deputy principal registrar Virginia Wilson, sent a letter to the Victorian Legal Services Board in January about Ms Teffaha’s conduct in a family law case when Justice Kirsty Marion Macmillan took the unusual step of restraining Ms Teffaha from representing her own client.
And Deputy Chief Magistrate of the Queensland Magistrates Court Anthony Gett referred Ms Teffaha to the Legal Services Commission in Queensland during a hearing in open court.
In January Ms Teffaha said the Family Court has “many corruption issues”, which prompted a condemnation from the Australian Bar Association and the Law Council. They said her comments were “baseless, inappropriate and undermining” of the criminal justice system and warned there was no place for the claims.
Ms Teffaha accused the judges of perverting the course of justice.
Victorian Ombudsman Deborah Glass found the government’s decision to immediately lock down the towers violated tenants’ human rights while the rest of the state had the chance to prepare for restrictions.
Dr van Diemen, who was the most senior public health official on the day of the decision, told Ms Glass she was “quite terrified … that we would see within a week many hundreds of [COVID-19] cases” and that delaying a day would not have made “a hugely significant difference”.
The class action has not yet been listed for a hearing date.
A spokesman for the Victorian Legal Services Board said it could not comment on ongoing investigations.
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David Estcourt is a court and general news reporter at The Age.