21 February, 2021
Activists win Adani case
An activist has secured a defamation win against against the Adani Mining Company.
AN EXPERIENCED anti coal activist from the group Frontline Action on Coal has fought and won a defamation dispute with Adani Mining but is pursuing further legal action after accusing the group of being “devious” and “untruthful”.
Scott Daines has been awarded $2000 in damages and Adani has publicly apologised for making false claims about him on their Facebook page.
Adani falsely alleged that Scott Daines and other peaceful activists from Frontline Action on Coal threw rocks at Adani workers' cars and kicked car doors during a protest in October.
Adani released the defamatory statement and false accusations shortly after FLAC activists captured footage of an Adani security guard charging at and assaulting a camera operator at the protest.
Mr Daines issued Adani a formal concerns notice under Queensland’s Defamation Act.
He sought a retraction of Adani’s defamatory social media post and a public apology.
Adani’s lawyers, from the firm Ashurst, wrote back to Mr. Daines agreeing to his demands and to pay damages.
According to Mr Daines Adani misled its lawyers by posting the apology on obscure Facebook page in an attempt to hide the apology from the public, rather than their normal Facebook page where the original defamatory post was first published.
Mr Daines continues to pursue Adani for further damages for the delay in publishing the apology and wrote to Adani’s lawyers Ashurst on January 29, accusing Adani of being “devious and untruthful...demonstrating the lowest standards of corporate behaviour” and being “motivated by malice”.
The experienced activist said he felt vindicated by his win against such a powerful corporation.
“I feel vindicated by the win and determined to pursue Adani further for it’s devious behaviour,” Mr Daines said.
“If the case had gone to court Adani would have had a lot more difficulties and had to pay a lot more than $2,000, as well as negative publicity.
“In 21 years of activism these successful campaigns that I’ve been involved in, including a campaign to protect over a million hectares of forest, are what motivate me to keep fighting for the environment despite the difficulties of being an activist and challenging the big corporations.”
An Adani spokeswoman said the allegations made in the post were incorrect and the corporation removed the post after admitting the error and published an apology.
Ashurst failed to respond to request for comment at time of going to press.