Bruce Lehrmann to headline speaking gig with law experts

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Bruce Lehrmann has landed a speaking slot at a $100-a-ticket ‘restoring the presumption of innocence’ conference, hosted by author and columnist Bettina Arndt.

“For decades our justice system has been tilted to favour ‘victims’, with the result that men and women are treated very differently – by police, the Family Court, judges and juries in the criminal law system,” Ms Arndt says on the event’s website.

“The presumption of innocence has been tossed aside – totally discarded by our biased media and undermined by regular legislative tampering with basic principles of justice,” Ms Arndt writes.

Ticket-holding attendees will listen to a speakers line up of expert lawyers and statisticians, the latter who will “expose how data on rape cases is misrepresented to downplay false allegations”, Ms Arndt says.

Mr Lehrmann will join the panel at the Sydney event in June, speaking to an audience set to pay between $100 to $120 for a ticket, with sandwiches and morning tea included.

Speaking about the abandoned trial against him for the alleged rape of Brittany Higgins in Parliament House, Mr Lehrmann told The Daily Telegraph in August: “Given what the prosecution has done to me, I may never work again”.

Mr Lehrmann has always denied the allegation, and there have been no findings made against him. The charge was dropped after the trial was aborted due to juror misconduct.

“I’ve got lawyers that need to be paid, people who have supported me, like my mum and uncle, who need to be supported” he said at the time.

However, Ms Arndt says Mr Lehrmann will not be paid for the speaking role.

“As is customary at this type of professional gathering, NO ONE WILL BE PAID!,” she told NCA NewsWire.

“We are fundraising for the event to ensure people such as law students will be able to afford the ticket price.”

Mr Lehrmann was asked to speak “as a victim of trial by media”, Ms Arndt said, “since he is the best-known example of how the media has signed up to the #MeToo narrative, rather than doing their proper job”.

Mr Lehrmann is currently in the midst of another blockbuster trial; he has sued Network 10 and Lisa Wilkinson for defamation regarding The Project’s reporting of Ms Higgins’ sexual assault allegation, with judgment expected to be delivered in the coming weeks.

That case was sensationally reopened last week, as Channel 10 sought for the court to hear new evidence from former Channel 7 producer Taylor Auerbach, who alleges Mr Lehrmann provided documents and recordings never tendered to court during the trial.

Mr Auerbach further alleged Network 7 covered the cost of meals in expensive restaurants, a round of golf in Tasmania, and of Thai massages and cocaine in the bid to secure an exclusive interview with the former Liberal staffer.

Mr Lehrmann has denied receiving a massage.

A spokesman for Seven Network said the broadcaster did not reimburse Mr Lehrmann for “expenditure that has allegedly been used to pay for illegal drugs or prostitutes, and has never done so”, in a statement released after the allegations were made public last week.

The ‘presumption of innocence’ organiser, Ms Arndt, has been approached for comment about Mr Lehrmann’s involvement in the event.

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