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5 years since George Zimmerman

Legal Insurrection reminds us that it’s been 5 years since the George Zimmerman verdict.

They helpfully include a list of “myth buster” posts they did at the time. It’s dismaying and depressing how so many of these myths are still prevalent.

Zimmerman Trial Myth Busters: Did Zimmerman disobey police orders to stay in car? A: No. 

Zimmerman Trial Myth Busters: Did Zimmerman “Chase Down” a Fleeing Martin? A: No.

Zimmerman Trial Myth Busters: Did Zimmerman really “racially profile” Martin? A: No.

Zimmerman Prosp. Juror E7: “no conclusions,” but posted on pro-Trayvon, anti-Zimmerman site containing threat against Zimmerman

ZIMMERMAN TRIAL BLOCKBUSTER — TRANSCRIPT — Eyewitness Good: Black guy in black hoodie on top punching down Mixed Martial Arts style

Evidentiary Flashback: Investigator Serino Tells FBI He Was Pressured to Bring Charges

Investigator Chris Serino Demoted to Patrolman by Superiors

Implosion: Police Testify Trayvon’s Father Originally Denied Son Was Screaming

Breaking – Jury will not get to see Trayvon fighting texts

Mid-Day 4 — West’s Cross-Examination of Rachel Jeantel

The Zimmerman Files: Aggregated day-by-day live coverage & analysis

Lies About Zimmerman Trial Just Keep Coming

Of course, I summarised their coverage at the time, by creating an index of the witnesses and how Andrew Branca reported them.

Then there is, Patterico’s analysis of Zimmerman’s 911 calls and how the media tried to make these evidence of wrongdoing and the fact that Zimmerman’s then wife was actually prosecuted for perjury because she said “I don’t know how much money is in the paypal account I don’t control”. It’s astonishing how widespread the lies and dishonesty surrounding this case were – and still are. Why on earth would you prosecute someone for “lying to the court” like that? It’s astonishingly unjustified and totally vindictive, especially compared to the way the prosecution

  • “forgot” to hand over evidence
  • when discovered, fought requests for evidence to the appeal courts
  • created a black-and-white photo of Zimmerman’s injuries,
  • continually implied that the law required not just actual harm, but serious harm before self defense applies
  • tried to use emotional reactions to undermine forensic experts

I note my final paragraph on the latter post.

Indeed, at this point one is left wondering how the lawyers involved can continue this charade. Do they honestly think that this level of dishonesty won’t get them kicked out of the legal profession?

How naive of me.

In the last 5 years I’ve argued a few people on this case on Twitter. Two incidents stand out:

  1. Someone tried to tell me a “witness 26” testified to some blatant racism on Zimmerman’s part. There was no such witness, and of course all the witnesses were named. Assuming these were witnesses interviewed as part of the investigation, their testimony must have been utterly useless, as several witnesses that did make it into the trial were laughably un-credible.
  2. Someone tried to tell me that the forensic expert used by the defense, the late Dr Vincent Di Maio, had somehow been outed as a fraud. In reality, he was one one the foremost forensic experts in the world, near the end of his career.

What’s really sad is how this entire thing ruined Zimmerman. I keep getting told how he’s been arrested so many times now, has associated with people who are clearly racist.

My reply is always the same: if you have 2 death threats per minute, after being cleared in one of the most one-sided trials ever, how is that going to affect your life? If you get told by everyone that you’re a racist, who are you going to end up gravitating to?

Zimmerman and the people around him had their lives turned upside down, by people who didn’t care about the truth.

Well, I care. I hope that’s something.

Zimmerman Libel Suit thrown out – because the libel made him famous

This is from the “you’ve got to be kidding me” files. George Zimmerman’s lawsuit against NBC came up recently, and the same judge that appeared to be so biased against him during his criminal trial proved it by throwing out what is really a slam-dunk case.

In the audio played repeatedly by NBC on the air to a national audience, the dispatcher’s inquiry was spliced out, as was Zimmerman’s explanatory text of why it appeared that Martin’s behavior was notable:

Zimmerman: “This guy looks like he’s up to no good . . . He looks black.”

The doctored audio obviously suggests that Zimmerman purportedly believed Martin was “up to no good” solely on the basis of being black–prima facie racism.  Utterly fabricated, of course.

Despite this, Judge Nelson has dismissed Zimmerman’s libel suit against NBC on the basis that he had become a “limited public figure” in the controversy.  How so? Judge Nelson writes:

[Zimmerman]e voluntarily injected his views into the public controversy surrounding race relations and public safety in Sanford and pursued a course of conduct that ultimately led to the death of Martin and the specific controversy surrounding it.  Moreover, Zimmerman’s shooting of Martin rendered him a public figure in the ensuing controversy.

Yep, according to Judge Nelson, Zimmerman became a limited public figure unable to pursue a clear case of libel because, while doing nothing whatever unlawful himself, and conducting himself precisely as instructed by the police who managed the Neighborhood Watch Program in which he participated, became the victim of a vicious, life-threatening attack by Trayvon Martin.

More simply, if you are the utterly innocent victim of a violent criminal attack by someone of another race, and defend yourself, that makes you a limited public figure subject without recourse to deliberate libel by the news media.


Of course, even as a limited public figure Zimmerman could still sue for libel if he could demonstrate malice. Judge Nelson deals with that by simply concluding that he cannot demonstrate malice:

Zimmerman cannot carry his burden of proving that the single, allegedly [?!?!–AFB] defamatory statement he challenges in the March 20 TODAY show broadcast was disseminated with actual malice.

She similarly dismisses other disseminations of essentially the same libelous content.

Go read the whole post. And yes, this is the exact same judge that ignored the law and threw out perfectly valid cellphone evidence, without actually telling anyone why (which would have made the judgement appeal-able).

Frankly I’m amazed that she, or the prosecution the Zimmerman case, are allowed in a courtroom at all.

Your Quick Guide to Zimmerman Trial, Part 2.

Part 1 is here, covering the disaster that was the prosecution case.

Day 9 Continued:

  • The Defense moved for a directed verdict of acquittal. “Mantei provided the State’s counter to the motion for a directed verdict in a manner that cannot readily be described in language suitable for a family-accessible blog. To say it was histrionic, lacking in factual evidence, and rife with abject fabrications, would be to put the matter too kindly.” The motion was rejected, and the judge demanded that the defence begin immediately – at 5pm on a Friday!
  • Gladys Zimmerman (George Zimmerman’s Mother) – Credibility issues “Asked if she had ever before heard her son scream like on the tape, Mrs. Zimmerman could only be honest–no, not exactly like that. O’Mara came back strong, however. Is that scream of anguish, fear, and terror without question your son’s voice?” “Yes,” she answered.
  • Jorge Meza (Orange County Courthouse Deputy, Uncle of George Zimmerman) – Helped Defence ““I felt the screams in my heart,” he testified firmly but emotionally. It is notable that this is the first member of either family who has claimed to have identified the voice absent a suggestive environment.”

Day 10 Midday | Summary

  • John Donnelly (Vietnam Combat Medic, Zimmerman Friend) – Helped Defence “Here, for the first time, was someone who could genuinely be said to possess personal expertise in being able to correlate a person’s normal speaking voice and their screams in extremis. And George Donnelly, firmly and without the slightest hesitation, identified George Zimmerman as the screamer.[…] The more BDLR sought to advance the impeachment of this witness, the more the quiet dignity of the war veteran became associated with George Zimmerman.”
  • Sandra Osterman (Family Friend, wife of Federal Air Marshall Mark Osterman) – Bizarre Prosecution Behaviour “O’Mara played the Jenna Lauer 911 call for her and asked her to identify the screamer. “Definitely, it’s Georgie,” she testified.”

BDLR then began what would be a cycle of expletive-laced questioning with every juror. He would play for them the non-emergency call Zimmerman made that evening, in which he refers to those “fucking punks,” and mutters that “these assholes always get away.” When recounting these phrases to each witness BDLR would fairly shout it out in the courtroom, although repetitive playing of the recording only reinforced that Zimmerman’s actual tone was one of resignation and frustration, not ill-will, spite, or hatred–the emotions BDLR wished to associate with the utterances.

BDLR’s typically sarcastic and petulant tone invariably emerged soon into his questioning of each witness. In the case of Sondra Osterman it was when he asked her, “Are you saying that George Zimmerman referring to “these assholes” means he wants to invite them out to dinner?” Sondra stood her ground, saying she didn’t believe Zimmerman sounded angry. That brought in this rather humiliating exchange for BDLR:

BDLR: “You don’t think he was angry? But you weren’t there that night, right? You’re just speculating.”

SO: [laughs] “I guess we both are.”

On re-direct O’Mara took BDLR’s theory of the case down at the knees. He stepped through the recording almost sentence by sentence, asking after each one, “Does that sound like spite to you? Ill-will? Hatred?” Each time Sondra Osterman responded, “No.”

  • Mark Osterman (Federal Air Marshall Zimmerman Friend) – Helped Defence “Mark also identified the screamer as George Zimmerman, but the real value of his testimony centered on Zimmerman’s management of his sidearm. He affirmed such fundamentals as the need for a self-defense firearm to be loaded to capacity, including a round in the chamber and a topped off magazine, as well as the standard that a deadly-force attacker be engaged center-mass.”
  • Geri Russo (GZ Co-Worker) – Her role was simply to identify the screamer as George Zimmerman and she did this with quiet confidence.”
  • Leanne Benjamin (GZ Co-Worker)  –She, too identified the screamer as George Zimmerman. “
  • Chris Serino (formerly lead Investigator),

    Doris Singleton (Police) – “Both of whom testified that when Serino played the Jenna Lauer audo recording for Tracy Martin and asked him if the screaming voice was that of Trayvon Martin he responded, “No.””

  • Tracey Martin (Trayvon’s Father) – Helped Defence by pretending he had not initially failed to identify the screamer as Trayvon. ” The only reason this testimony wasn’t the least credible of the trial is because the trial has seen a great deal of incredible testimony.”
  • Bill Lee (Former Police Chief) – Helped Defence by pointing out that the way the prosecution had tainted evidence in the way they had the family identify Martin as the screamer on the tapes.
  • Adam Pollock (MMA Gym owner) – Helped Defence. “Asked if he ever allowed Zimmerman to fight in a ring, he answered “Absolutely not, I wouldn’t put him in harms way.””

The day finished with some legal motions, including the decision to admit the Martin toxicology report.

Day 11 Summary

  • Dr. Vincent Di Maio (Forensic Pathologist) – Helped Defence. This is the sort of guy the prosecution should have been putting on the stand, with a lengthy list of credentials. He noted a number of things in Zimmerman’s favour – see the link for a full list. “To sum up, Dr. Di Maio’s testimony was extremely favorable to the defense, and quite destructive to the State.” I also note this Bizarre Prosecution Behaviour:Perhaps the strangest aspect of BDLR’s cross was the way it kept beating on the theme of uncertainty.  Dr. Di Maio had presented one possibility, BDLR argued, but isn’t it true that there was a second possibility, and a third possibility?  How such a cross was intended to drive the jury closer towards proof beyond a reasonable doubt is unclear.BDLR also repeated his tendency to ask questions on cross to which he clearly didn’t know the answer, and getting “blown up” by the reply.  In his direct testimony Dr. Di Maio had mentioned studying gunshot patterns on live animals.  Now BDLR acted aghast that Dr. Di Maio would have harmed poor innocent little beasts (the fact that there is at least one serious pet owner on the jury may have promoted this line of questioning).”
  • Elouise Dilligard (Neighbour) – Helped Defense Elouise Dilligard is also an African-American woman.  Having this older black woman, calling into court from her sick bed, testify with such affection for the Zimmerman’s and George in particular, completelly[sic] gutted the State’s characterization of George Zimmerman as some kind of seething racist who was actively seeking out a black boy to kill.”
  • The defence’s animated video was discussed, but not resolved
  • Norton Bonaparte (Jr. City Manager) – Proceedural (as far as I can tell). Testified about playing the 9/11 tapes. Apparently the police were excluded per family request.
  • Day ended with some discussions, including one defence witness who sat in court, and what turned into a heated discussion on Trayvon Martin’s text messages.

Day 12 Summary

  • The day started with the judge disallowing Martin’s text messages, in spite of the law being clear that they should have been allowed. This decision meant that the character of Trayvon Martin was essentially hidden from the jury. They never got to hear how he liked to start fights, and was buying and selling guns for example, or the efforts he went to to hide the evidence he kept on his phone.
  • Dennis Root (Use of Force Expert) – Helped Defense. “As has become a pattern in this trial, the defense witness’ testimony was utterly consistent with George Zimmerman’s narrative of self-defense.” Bizarre (Well, nasty anyway) Prosecution Behaviour “It was almost as if the State had never deposed Root before, had simply never met this witness before his testimony in the courtroom.”
  • Olivia Bertalan (Former Resident) – Helped Defence. Was a victim of a home invasion and was helped by GZ.The Zimmerman these people described, this kind, caring neighbor, could not be further from the evil, seething, racist murdered of young black boys that the State continues to try to sell to the jury.
  • Robert Zimmerman (George Zimmerman’s father) – As with all family members who identified the screamer as “their boy”, this has to be filed under “Credibility issues”. Bizarre Prosecution Behaviour In typically classy fashion, the State prosecutors noted to the Court that the witness was still subject to recall–meaning that he would still not be able to be present in court to support his son.”
  • “In a brief exchange with the Court, George Zimmerman indicated his decision to not testify on his own behalf in this case.” – Some have criticised the judge for this, and GZ’s lawyers upset, but it does seem that doing this was proper as there have been a number of cases going to appeal in Florida where the defendant has claimed he was prevented by his lawyers from testifying.

The Defense rested.

  • “…O’Mara made another motion for acquittal.  Essentially he argued that as little basis existed for continuing the trial at the end of the state’s case was now even further reduced to the point that an acquittal was the only reasonably outcome.  H[e] explicitly asked that the State be required to “identify their factual scenario, their theory of the case, anything, articulating in some way Zimmerman’s guilt. Judge Nelson did not take him up on this offer, and instead ruled that there existed substantial evidence both direct and circumstantial to allow the second degree murder charge to go to the jury”
  • Bizarre Prosecution Behaviour. The prosecution made a disastrous attempt at calling rebuttal witnesses. First, the called the Guy owner again, and proceeded to ask questions that were completely outside the rules and he didn’t actually end up testifying. They then decided not to call the second, and the third was an attempt to talk about GZ’s arrest 8 years earlier, for which he holds no conviction. “In nay case, it was prior bad act evidence, inadmissible in this case.  Plus, O’Mara cautioned, if the State called this one witness to testify that Zimmerman was violent, he would bring more than 30 counter witnesses to testify to Zimmerman’s peaceful character.”
  • Defence witness who sat in court was ok – “Ultimately, Judge Nelson denied the State’s request the Donnelly’s testimony be stricken from the record.”

Summing up the case:

  • Prosecution tried to get 3rd Degree Murder added, on the basis that GZ had comitted Child abuse. The judge refused.
  • Prosecution Summing up – “What the jury got was not a compelling narrative of guilt, however, but a rambling monologue of isolated bits of circumstantial evidence, much of which was consistent with–and even supportive of–the defense’s “self-defense” theory of the case.”
  • Defence““So now,” O’Mara segued, “let’s talk about the evidence.” That simple sentence could only reinforce how little BDLR had touched upon the evidence in his lengthy, meandering closing the day before.”

“In an interesting twist, O’Mara then highlighted how weak the State’s theory of the case was in the face of countervailing evidence. Let’s toss away, he suggested all of George Zimmerman’s statements consistent with self-defense. The State says they are self-serving lies. Ok, let’s say he never made them. What does that leave us with?

It leaves us, O’Mara said, with this–and he held up the worst of the bloody photos of Zimmerman’s face, his nose crushed sideways and blood running down his lip, taken by Officer Tim Smith while Zimmerman sat in his patrol car.”

  • (same link) Prosecution Rebuttal  – “From the first words out of his mouth it was clear that his presentation was to be even more fact-free than that of Mr. de la Rionda had been. “The human heart,” he stated, “guides us in big things and little things. Let us look into the heart of this child.”” 
  • Jury instructions

Zimmerman NOT GUILTY

Legal Insurrection reports in the last few minutes that the jury has come back with a “not guilty” verdict.

Given the evidence, this is by far and away the only verdict that could be described as justice.

Regrettably, most people (including one commenter who keeps returning) have no idea just how bad the case against him was, and the media has largely not reported this. As a result, riots are almost inevitable.

Update: Watching the prosecution team (corrected) on Fox’s live stream. They’re trying to sugar-coat their defeat and their disgusting tactics as some sort of quest for the truth.

The reality is that this case should never have been bought to trial, and never would have had it not been for political interference.

Update 2: Now claiming that she bought the charge that they thought they could prove – that’s utter BS.

Update 3: What?? Reporter asks if they were disappointed that the child abuse thing was thrown out.

Update 4: Making light of Zimmerman’s injuries, then says she isn’t.

Update 5: BLDR claims again that Martin was minding his own business. That’s not what the evidence says.

Update 6: LI says Angela Corey should resign. Very hard to argue with that.

Update 7: Now trying to whitewash their firing the whistle-blower who alerted the defence that they were hiding evidence.

Update 8: Ask for “peace and privacy” but notable absence of mention of Zimmerman’s name in this call. Now the defence team.

Update 9: Read a letter praising the police (didn’t catch who from). Thanked the jury. Ecstatic with the result, only guilty of self-defence. Don West calls prosecution disgraceful. No argument here. Thrilled the jury kept the tragedy from being a travesty. Sad it took this long for justice. Reporter asks about threats to their family.

Question: was this a fair fight? Wasted a lot of time mucking them around with discovery, held up trial by 6 months. Was David and Goliath, vastly out-funded.

Update 10: Via instapundit: “So a Hispanic shoots a black and is acquitted by women, but it’s still white men’s fault.”


Idiot/Savant – “those poor, poor, cheats”

Compare and contrast people:

First, tax cheats are bad people.

Tax cheats steal from us all. Every dollar they save in tax from these tricks is a dollar we have to pay, borrow, or cut – a dollar we don’t get to spend on schools, hospitals and state houses. The government should make these companies pay their fair share. And if the present government refuses to do so, because they are on the side of the tax cheats, we should elect one that will.

Here’s another:

And he’s right. That money you save by aiding and abetting a tradeperson’s tax fraud? That’s money that would normally go to schools, hospitals, and public services. You might as well be going down there and smashing some windows yourself.

So, I support this campaign: people should pay what they owe, and not commit tax fraud.

And more:

Goff’s statement that

No one knows exactly how much is lost by people dodging their tax – but it’s been estimated in the billions.

is carrying an awful lot of weight here.

Like Goff, I want to see those loopholes closed and that avoidance stopped. People should pay their fair share, and those who don’t are cheats and parasites


This is the cost of having great chunks of our economy owned by foreign tax cheats: not only do the profits go offshore, but they do so in ways which rob the government of revenue, and therefore us of public services.

Got the idea? Avoiding paying your taxes to a sovereign government, even if you what you have done to do so is completely legal makes you an evil person(tm).

Now this week National announced that they will be arresting people who had cheated the New Zealand government out of it’s revenue. We’re talking people who have moved overseas to maximize their incomes, but owe the government money, but have made no effort whatsoever to pay.

You’d think that this sort of crack down would be music to the ears of someone so worried about New Zealand’s tax base. I mean, these people aren’t structuring their affairs to keep the money off-shore, (which is perfectly legal) they actually have signed agreements with the New Zealand government to pay the money. Yet in spite of having signed contracts, the government has offered to negotiate  and that offer has been treated with contempt.

In other words, the morality of this situation is pretty one-sided.

So Idiot would be really happy to see the government announce it’s taking this “threat to government revenue” so seriously. Yea right:

And what National’s policy will do is make sure they can never come home ever again. They can’t come home for christmas, because they’ll be arrested. If a New Zealand family member gets sick, they’ll have to choose between their family and their freedom. They won’t be able to come home for funerals. All of that is inhumane, vindictive and punitive, but it gets worse: they won’t be able to do business here, because they’ll be arrested. And they won’t even be able to move back home, because if they come back for a job interview, the government will throw them in jail.

Here’s my take: you cheat your taxes, you go to jail. You cheat your student loan repayments, you go to jail. (You legally avoid changing your taxes, bad on you – but it’s up to the government to change the law.)

In short: cry me a freaking river. If you find yourself unable to return home because you’re wanted by the authorities, you should have not broken the law in the first place. If you owe on your student loan, you should talk to the IRD today (ok, not today… perhaps Monday).

Hey, maybe that might have been the point of the law? Gee…

But on the other hand, if people are calling you out for avoiding taxes, just find some way of converting it to a student loan. Because “gaming the system” is ok – because as long as you actually agreed to pay the money, it’s a-ok with the left to avoid payment.

Obamacare – not out of the woodwork yet

Patterico reports that the shenanigans that were used to

a) pass the Obamacare bill and

b) get it through the supreme court

are about to collide.

You see, in order to get the bill passed, they took a bill passed by the senate, then changed the entire thing, then passed it in the house. The bill (even though it was completely different) was “deemed” to have passed the senate even though it clearly had not. But that’s not the issue.

It seems that the bill effectively now originated in the Senate. Now, in order to get the bill passed by the Supreme Court, Obama argued that the penalty was actually a tax and hence legal.

See, the US federal government actually has only a few ways in which it can make a nationwide regulation. One is regulating commerce between the states, and that was rejected as a justification by the SC since accepting it would have pretty much rendered the constitution meaningless (not that liberals were worried by that). Another is tax, and even though it was patently not a tax, the penalty charged to people without insurance was called a tax to get it cleared with the SC.

But under the constitution, tax bills have to originate with the house.

And this one didn’t.

In short, if Obamacare is really constitutional*, I’m a deep-fried chicken.

Anyway, go have a read. This particular train-wreck-of-a-law’s got a ways to go yet.

(*And by this I mean, objectively within the boundaries of federal government power set by the original founders of the United States – not “found constitutional by a majority of a panel of judges selected for their ideology”)

Was Chavis Carter shot by Police?

No Right Turn has discovered corruption in the American police.

On July 28, Chavis Carter, an American man, was arrested in Jonesboro, Ark. He was search, twice, his hands were handcuffed behind his back, and he was placed in the back seat of a police car. He was then “found” slumped over in the car with a gunshot wound to his head. The cause of death? “Suicide”, according to the Jonesboro police:

The police pretty obviously murdered a man here. They arrested him, handcuffed him, then shot him in the head. Having murdered him, they have destroyed evidence – dashboard-cam footage mysteriously does not show the killing, but shows before and after – and are engaged in a coverup (including a rather laughable show and tell where police officers try and demonstrate how a man with his hands cuffed behind his back could shoot himself in the head). Their excuses are simply an insult to our intelligence.

My first reaction was to agree, while wondering why Idiot would get so het up about an obviously unsuccessful cover-up in a country thousands of miles away. Then I did some research.

To my surprise, few stories seemed to be jumping to the same conclusions for several reasons:

  1. While the man was searched twice, the gun could have been missed on the first, cursory  search and then hidden in the cop car during the second, through one. It’s called a mistake, and they do happen.
  2. As far as I can tell, the dashboard cam footage has not mysteriously “disappeared”. It just hasn’t been released to the public. I can’t imagine why the police haven’t issued footage of someone blowing their brains out, can you?
  3. The autopsy revealed he was high on various drugs at the time, including (if I’ve read this right) “P”.
  4. And finally, there was a (one presumes dispassionate) witness who put the police “several feet” away from the cops when the shot was fired in broad daylight.

It’s possible that the cops decided “hey, one less drug dealer” and a witness agreed to cover for them. It’s also possible that a drug dealer, high on his own product, managed to hide his gun from the police then shot himself while they were otherwise engaged.

But we shall see I suppose.

Madeleine Flannagan, Lawyer, and Jacqueline Sperling, Blogger. What’s the big deal?

Jacqueline Sperling has a special place in her heart for a lawyer named Madeleine Flannagan. As I’ve noted previously, she’s blogged obsessively about the dispute she created with her, and has produced as part of that obsession a screed of lies and harassment that is pretty hard to brush under the carpet.

But it seems in all this that people are finding it hard to get the big picture. So I’m writing this post to introduce new readers to the saga. It is of course not a complete telling and simplifies many aspects.

I’ve included links to posts made so far here. Over time this post will include more links to various aspect of the story so people can check for themselves the truth of the various aspects and claims made.


Jackie Sperling was originally a fleeting friend and confidant of Ms Brown, who took pity on her after the media coverage of her breakup with Michael Laws. Ms Brown had some personal issues (exacerbated by her guilt over a brief indiscretion with a married man) which cascaded into an emotional breakdown. Jackie, instead of being a supportive friend, abused Ms Brown and blogged publicly about her problems and subsequent suicide attempt. Ms Brown asked Jackie to remove the posts, but this only made things worse. Madeleine Flannagan, who knew Ms Brown and had met Sperling (as all 3 were originally bloggers) stepped in and tried to persuade Jackie Sperling to stop the harassment. Her efforts were not successful

Later, Ms Brown became involved with another man (Sperling claims he was married – not true) and this relationship eventually broke up (not helped by Sperling’s interference). Her now former partner was an old acquaintance of Sperling’s, and Sperling encouraged him to confide in her about the relationship. Result: more blogging, even more nasty than before. Madeleine, who had now been admitted to the bar and was acting for Ms Brown on a Family Court matter relating to this man, spoke to Sperling regarding her latest blog posts (she had blogged on the Family Court matter – a big no-no legally as FC proceedings are private), and her fresh defamation of Ms Brown. If the material was removed no further action would be taken.

Incidentally, Ms Brown’s former partner also requested on several occasions that Sperling stop blogging about Ms Brown and their relationship break-down; to no avail.

Sperling’s response was to immediately post on her blog that “the lawyer involved” was a drug addict, and she contacted Madeleine’s employer to make sure also read the post. She has since admitted contacting Madeleine’s employer, but claims that this was to check if the threat of legal actions was normal.

Madeleine then filed a lawsuit to get the defamatory claims taken down. This provoked Sperling into an orgy of posts, claiming victim-hood and persecution by rich lawyers. She also deleted and edited many of her old posts in order to appear more innocent to her readers, claiming for example that she had never named Madeleine and Ms Brown when she had done so on several occasions,including one occasion where she addressed Ms Brown by her full name and explicitly told her to attempt suicide again.As the affidavits were filed, she posted selected quotes so as to present a false picture of the lawsuits, and made many false and misleading claims about that which she did post. To this day, she does not admit the true nature of the lawsuit on her blog, nor that she was entitled to legal aid to fight it.

Meanwhile, the media read Wonderful Now and wrote a story based on Jackie’s postings.

At one stage she claimed she was ready to settle, and had her partner (a struck off lawyer) negotiate while she wrote more defamatory posts. She then bitterly complained about how her offer had been rejected, and how ridiculous the offers that were made to her were.

When the application for a restraining order finally made it to court, the Judge was scathing of Jackie’s conduct. He found no evidence at all that anything Jackie had said about Madeline was true. He rejected outright her affidavit, which was really written only for her blog readers to maintain the fiction of victim-hood. He however read Jackie’s latest blog post claiming she’d removed everything (she hadn’t) and was angst filled about her behaviour (she wasn’t – just the consequences). By this time, Madeline’s employment status was perfectly stable as her employer had seen ample evidence of Jackie’s state of mind!

He found 14 counts of harassment on Jackie’s part, and all but one criteria met for making a restraining order. He urged Sperling to stop and move on.

Sperling then declared complete vindication to her readers and put all the posts back up. She has since published more defamatory (and sometimes outright crazy) posts including Madeline’s husband’s bank account details (submitted for the lawsuit) and many claims that Madeline is an incompetent lawyer (which the trial judge rejected explicitly in his judgement). She has refused to post the decision, or even acknowledge that it states clearly that she is the aggressor, but has posted several out of context quotes from it.

She has also placed frivolous complaints to the law society against all the lawyers involved, including Simon Buckingham, forcing them to spend time and energy defending themselves.

During this time, both Madeline Flanagan and Ms Brown have said almost nothing publicly. They have had their reputations attacked repeatedly, and without any basis.

Legal action is continuing in various forms by various parties. There has also been considerable concern that someone of Sperling’s character and habits is studying counselling – but with proper scrutiny it is unlikely that she will be allowed to practice.

This post is about Jacqueline (Jackie) Sperling, and is part of an ongoing series discussing her ongoing campaign of harassment and lies against lawyer Madeleine Flannaganlawyer Simon Buckingham, and Ms Brown (her original target for harassment), as well as The Narrative – the alternate reality she presents on her blog in which she pretends to be the victim of her targets. You can read a court decision that outlines her campaign and the court’s assessment of The Narrative herePlease do not place abusive comments on her blog, phone her, or approach her or her family as she will blame this on her victims.

Did Sperling Genuinely try to Settle with Madeleine Flannagan and Ms Brown? Part 1.


I have noted previously that Jacqueline Sperling tried (and continues to try) to ruin the life of lawyer Madeleine Flannagan, for having the temerity to request she stop harassing and defaming in her spare time.

Back in May, Sperling wrote this in one of her posts just before the court hearing (which she did not attend):

Twice in the past week i have attempted to settle this. I have offered to remove anything from my blog that these women took offence to – not because i believe i did anything wrong – but because i do not have the time or energy to waste on this.

I have come to the point where my right to free speech and expression comes after keeping my family safe, my relationship happy, and my success with my studies.

I think the fact that there has been no agreement reached even after me making that offer shows the level of vindictiveness that i am dealing with. This is not about anything i said being true or untrue. This is not about their reputations or mine.

This is about [Ms] Brown’s inherent desire to hurt and destroy anyone who she feels has rejected her. She doesn’t care how nuts she makes everyone look – including her friends – in the process.

It won’t work.

Even if i lose on the 31st – i will abide by any court order – and move on with my life with a smile on my face. I have survived far worse than this – and i will survive this.

Everything will still be Wonderful Now.

So she claims:

  • to have tried to settle not once, but twice
  • that she offered to remove anything from her blog that her victims took offence to
  • that there has been no agreement shows “the level of vindictiveness that i am dealing with”
  • “this is not about anything”… “being true or untrue”
  • this is not about reputations
  • She will abide by any court order

She has quoted this claim (that she’s tried to settle) several times. It’s a big part of The Narrative that she is a nice person who was driven by despair to disregard her rights and throw herself at the mercy of these “crazy lawyers”  and offer a settlement that they then refused.

Well, that’s her story – what’s the other side?


When does the harassment stop?


One day there was a blogger. This blogger had a habit of saying nasty things about people and had been taken to court several times already*.

One day, that blogger decided, “I know, I’ll taught my friend who recently decided to attempt suicide.” So she did, and was really quite nasty.

Well, that friend had a nice friend who was a lawyer. Let’s call her Madeleine. Madeleine also knew the blogger, because she was a blogger too.

So she went to the blogger, and said “look, this isn’t really very nice. Could you please stop being so mean?”

The blogger didn’t like that. So she started being mean to Madeleine too. She made up a nasty little lie and whispered in the ear of Madeleine’s boss.

Of course, this was a bit silly. Taunting lawyers is bound to get you into trouble, and sure enough, Madeleine decided that this behaviour had to stop. So she found a new lawyer to help her.

Soon the blogger was inundated with afidavits and court appointments. She knew she was in trouble, even if she was pretending to all her readers that she was a nice person.

So she filed complaints with the Law Society.

Meanwhile, the judge handed down his ruling. He didn’t give Madeleine what she wanted, but he did agree with one thing – the blogger had been very nasty, even as she tried to tell everyone she was being bullied.

[138] Subsequent posts of 10 May 2012 entitled “Lies No 1 and 2” carry the personal attack further accusing Ms Brown of being a liar and it continues in Lie No 3 posted on 10 May 2012 together with clippings from newspapers featuring Ms Brown. Lie No 4 was posted on 10 May 2012 all of which seems to point to an obsession that Ms Sperling has with Ms Brown rather than Ms Brown having an obsession with Ms Sperling as she stated in the comment “please leave me alone”. In fact it is Ms Brown who appears to have been the subject of continued attention from Ms Sperling.

But even after the courts declared that the blogger was a nasty person, she still kept being mean, looking for new ways to taunt and persecute people who  dared to cross her path…

I have received confirmation of my complaint from the Law Society regarding Simon Buckingham. I am considering making another complaint regarding his conduct in relation to threats that he made to me the evening prior to this case being heard regarding having the judge deem my behaviour to be a criminal matter.

Re my complaint regarding Madeleine – i have not yet heard back from the Law Society other than confirmation that they had received it – regarding that complaint. I am also considering making another complaint in relation to her conduct since the last one i submitted to them.

If i am allowed to – i will advise how they went when i hear – however it is my understanding that the Law Society also publishes that information on their own website.

I hope by now that you’ve worked out why I’ve told this tale like it was a fairy story – it’s well into la-la land.

  1. She has attacked one person.
  2. That person hired a lawyer, who she attacked even more viciously.
  3. That person hired a lawyer, who she also attacked
  4. Now the courts have declared that she is not the victim, but rather the perpetrator, the harrasser not the harrassee, and she is in response considering laying even more complaints.

This is insane. How long does she hope to carry this on? Will she lay formal complaints about her victim’s, lawyer, lawyer’s, lawyer? What about that lawyer’s accountant? How about the guy who sells the accountant his coffee?

That coffee guy might have a cat, and the cat has a vet…

* Perhaps a future post.


This post is about Jacqueline (Jackie) Sperling, and is part of an ongoing series discussing her ongoing campaign of harassment and lies against lawyer Madeleine Flannagan and Ms Brown, and The Narrative – the alternate reality she presents on her blog in which she pretends to be the victim of her targets. You can read a court decision that outlines her campaign and the court’s assessment of The Narrative here.

Please do not place abusive comments on her blog, phone her, or approach her or her family as she will blame this on her victims.

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