In July 2016 Graham Preston was found guilty and fined $3 000 for breaching Tasmanian legislation which creates 150m exclusion zones around places where abortions are done. That conviction is now being appealed.
The appeal was to be heard in the Supreme Court in Hobart on Thursday 27 April and Friday 28 April, 2017 but that has had to be put back. This is because another case, which has relevance to Graham's case, will be heard in the High Court in early May. The legal team believe it is important for the verdict in this other case to be given before proceeding with Graham's appeal.
Graham Preston from Brisbane and Ray and Penny Stallard a retired couple who live in Tasmania were the first persons in Australia to be arrested and charged under such legislation. All three were found guilty of the charges.
At the time of their arrest Graham, Ray and Penny had been standing peacefully near a place where abortions are known to be carried out. They were holding placards – “Everyone has the Right to Life, Article 3, Universal Declaration of Human Rights”, “Every Child has the Right to Life, Article 6, UN Convention on the Rights of the Child”, and an enlarged photo of an 8-week-old preborn baby - passing out literature and speaking to passers-by.
Their right to freedom of speech, based on firmly held beliefs, has been prevented and this has significant negative implications for similar communications and stances in the future. Victoria and the ACT have since introduced similar legislation.
Their case was defended on a number of grounds but especially on the ground that the exclusion zone legislation is unconstitutional.
Funding is sought to assist Graham Preston’s legal team, who have acted largely pro bono, in getting this case heard. Presently nine copies of an Appeal Book are at the point of being produced and then filed
We need your help
This is where you come in, we need you to help cover the funding of the legal defence team. The implications of this case are huge, and could have devastating consequences on what we can say in this country and the ability to speak up for those who cannot defend themselves.
That is why we need your support. Please give what you can towards this. Thank you!
Enquires can be directed to Randall Gibbens 0412 715 937
Deposits can be made via this website.