Capilano Honey

Supreme Court finds Capilano Honey’s lawyers lied and deceived about poisonous and toxic honey

The NSW Supreme Court of Appeal has found that Capilano Honey’s lawyers lied and deceived the court about their poisonous and toxic honey defamation and injurious falsehood claim against journalist Shane Dowling. The court also found that Capilano Honey’s lies and deception in gaining a super-injunction and wide-ranging suppression orders have had “an unjustifiable chilling effect on freedom of speech“.

The Court of Appeal handed down its judgment on the 3rd of October 2018 in the middle of the media storm over Capilano Honey selling fake honey but the Court of Appeal judgment went unreported by the old media even though it was a key issue. Not only has Capilano Honey been selling dodgy honey for years but they lied and deceived the Supreme Court of NSW to try to conceal it from the public in the long-running battle between myself and Capilano. Capilano Honey has also lied and deceived the court in their almost identical claim against Beekeeper Simon Mulvany which is now before the Supreme Court of Victoria.

Background to the Super-Injunction suppression orders:

I wrote an article in September 2016 titledAustralia’s Capilano Honey admit selling toxic and poisonous honey to consumersabout Capilano Honey suing Beekeeper Simon Mulvany who runs the Save the Bees Australia Facebook page. The article started going viral here and in Asia. I wrote another article a few weeks later about their CEO Ben McKee and Capilano Honey and Mr McKee took legal action.

Capilano shareholder Kerry Stokes has been suing me since April 2014 using the same lawyers and the same tactics in frivolous and vexatious defamation proceedings. Stokes is also the major shareholder of Capilano Honey although that seems to have changed as of a few weeks ago but he is still a substantial shareholder at least.

The Court of Appeal judgment raises numerous issues some of which are:

  1. How did Capilano Honey manage to get the super-injunction, non-publication orders and suppression orders in the first place and how did they keep the dodgy court orders for over 2 years?
  2. Why did the old media not report the judgment especially given it was clearly relevant to the media storm in September / October 2018?
  3. Why have Capilano Honey never filed in court their evidence to prove their honey is safe for humans to support the injurious falsehood claim given there is a reverse onus of proof? For over 2 years why has the court not made Capilano Honey file their evidence?
  4. Why has the ACCC stopped its investigation into Capilano Honey’s fake honey when Capilano are refusing to provide the court with the required evidence they claim shows their honey is not poisonous?
  5. It a blatant SLAPP lawsuit (strategic lawsuit against public participation) so what are the Federal and State governments doing?
  6. The judgment by the 3 judges of the Court of Appeal shows evidence of judicial corruption, given there was no legal basis for the super-injunction and suppression orders, by Justice David Davies and former Supreme Court judge Peter Hall who is now the Commissioner of the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption. So why no action?

Key parts of the unanimous judgment by Justice Margaret Beazley, Justice John Basten and Justice Ruth McColl: (Click here to read the full judgment: Capilano Honey Ltd v Dowling (No 2) [2018] NSWCA 217 (3 October 2018))

The super-injunction and suppression orders against me were issued by the Supreme Court on behalf of Capilano Honey in October 2016 and were lifted in June 2018. Capilano Honey appealed and it was heard by the Court of Appeal on the 19th July 2018 with the judgment given on the 3rd of October 2018. It starts off with the background.

Background as per the judgment

On 17 September 2016, Shane Dowling (the respondent) posted an article on his website accusing Capilano Honey Ltd (the corporate applicant) ofselling toxic and poisonous honey. On 6 October 2016, the respondent posted a further article on the website making allegations about the corporate applicant’s Chief Executive Officer, Ben McKee (the individual applicant).

On 7 October 2016, the applicants commenced proceedings against the respondent for injurious falsehood and defamation. Prior to commencing proceedings, they sought and were granted ex parte interim orders including take-down orders, interlocutory injunctive relief restraining republication, and orders prohibiting publication of any aspect of the proceedings. On 10 October 2016, similar ex parte interim orders were made regarding a further article published by the respondent on his website on 9 October 2016.

(On the 10th of October 2016 Capilano Honey’s lawyers also asked the court to charge me with contempt of court)

On 15 May 2017, three days after directions were given with respect to a foreshadowed application by the respondent to strike out the proceedings for want of prosecution, the applicants filed and served a statement of claim.

On 8 June 2018, on the respondent’s application, and following a contested hearing in April 2018, the primary judge (McCallum J) made orders revoking the interim and interlocutory orders.

At paragraph 56 of the judgment it says:

“The second difficulty arises from the phrase “false statements”. In pursuing a claim in injurious falsehood, the burden will be upon Capilano to prove that the allegations were false, were made maliciously and caused damage to the company.”

Capilano Honey failed dismally to make out their case. They used hearsay evidence, second-hand hearsay evidence in affidavits by their lawyer Richard Keegan and in many instances no evidence at all. Why were there no affidavits from any Capilano Honey employees? And where is all the evidence showing their honey is not poisonous, toxic and polluted?

Keeping in mind that Capilano has to also prove damage to their company as part of proving their injurious falsehood claim the judgment says at paragraph 75: “the applicants made no attempt to assess any financial loss, or likely loss, in Australia.“. That in itself says Capilano Honey could not make out their claim for injurious falsehood and have deliberately and knowingly misled the court.

A prime example of the scandalous attempt to use evidence that can only be described as total dribble can be found at paragraph 73 of the judgment where it quotes so-called evidence by Capilano Honey’s lawyer Richard Keegan:

  1. In his 13 April 2018 affidavit Mr Keegan stated:[43]

“I am informed by Mr McKee and believe that he has received communications from a manager at one of Australia’s largest supermarket chains who has read the toxic honey article and has told Mr McKee that the article is posing ‘a very serious risk to our brand.’

And at paragraph 77 it says:

  1. In these circumstances, it cannot be said that the judge either misconceived or disregarded the evidence before her. It is true that she did not refer to the second-hand hearsay evidence of a conversation with a manager at a supermarket chain, but there is little that can be said about it. The content was vague, there was no indication of when the statement was made or in what context and the statement contained no particular reference to the source of the concern.

Using hearsay evidence is a joke but for a qualified lawyer using second-hand hearsay evidence is scandalous. As the judges said: “there is little that can be said about it“.  Richard Keegan should be struck off as a solicitor. This is a lawyer who is lying and perjuring himself in court to help Capilano sell poisonous, polluted and fake honey to the public.

Capilano Honey would also have to prove malice by me to make out their injurious falsehood claim but provided bugger all evidence of it. But it’s worth noting that at paragraph 82 of the judgment they said “An ulterior motive was alleged, namely that the respondent was “fixated on attacking Mr Kerry Stokes”, a part owner of Capilano.” How paranoid is Kerry Stokes?

The lawyers representing Capilano Honey are also Kerry Stokes’ and Channel 7’s lawyers (Stokes controls Seven) and they would have had to get Kerry Stokes’ approval to put the reference to him in their submissions. It shows a powerful prima facie case that Kerry Stokes is running Capilano Honey’s legal case against me. Given that, any likely future class action against Capilano Honey for poisoning the Australian public could also go after Kerry Stokes’ $Billions as well.

Another reference to the judgment to reinforce what I previously quoted is at paragraph 122 which points out that the super-injunction and suppression orders had “an unjustifiable chilling effect on freedom of speech“. It was always blatantly a SLAPP lawsuit and the government should investigate. From what I have read INTERPOL are investigating the international food fraud element which one would think would include investigating Capilano Honey and Kerry Stokes role.

Capilano Honey has 2 Barristers and numerous lawyers who specialize in this area of law representing them and they knew they had no justification for the super-injunction and non-publication orders. That is why they went to court ex-parte (by themselves and without my knowledge) on the 7th of October 2016 to get the suppression orders and a super-injunction so I could not tell anyone. They knew they could not defend the court orders in a contested hearing and it should not have been allowed by the judge Peter Hall and Justice David Davies and the appeal judgment says so. At paragraph 114 of the judgment it says: “On the evidence before the Court, there was no reason why the matter had to be dealt with on the spot and a number of reasons why it should not have been.

I didn’t report the Court of Appeal decision in October 2018 because I was in jail for 3 counts of contempt of court of which 2 were for breaching suppression orders. Those suppression orders no longer exist because they were invalid in the first place the same as Capilano Honey’s suppression orders which adds further weight to my allegations that NSW judges are corruptly issuing invalid suppression orders and selling suppression orders to companies and individuals to help hide crimes they want hidden from the public and law enforcement agencies.

The Capilano Honey matter against me is a prime example of the judicial corruption issuing invalid suppression orders. It is so corrupt even the 3 appeals court judges wouldn’t defend it. But even though Justice Lucy McCallum found in my favour as the initial judge overturning the suppression orders she needs to explain why she helped keep the suppression orders going for over 2 years and why she has never issued orders for Capilano Honey to file their evidence.

Justice McCallum has also deliberately ignored for over 12 months and failed ordering the interrogatory questions and discovery I have requested from Capilano Honey be complied with. I have written articles about it before accusing Justice McCallum of taking bribes from Capilano which she is well aware as the articles are before the court as evidence and she has never refuted the allegations.

I thought I would start the year off with a positive post. The judgment is well worth a read and a big win for this website, its supporter and freedom of speech. The battle isn’t over yet as the defamation and injurious falsehood case continues but we’re in a strong legal position to win it and we’ve managed to do that with me as a self-represented litigant up against a multi-million-dollar company with shareholders with deep pockets. The support of the followers of this website has been crucial in the battle, so thank you.

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49 replies »

  1. So your opinions were completely proven in October yet you were kept in jail for crimes that you could not have committed if the playing field was level? Total travesty, hope McCallum cops it in the neck!!!

  2. Shane, I have posted a request on Woolworths Facebook page asking when will they be clearing their shelves of this product and why they have continuously sold this poison to the public whilst being aware of the KCA case. I added the photo from here but it didn’t come up will keep you posted, everyone should do the same, please.

  3. Shane, just looked again, it’s up on Woolworths F/book page, will all here jump on it and have your say before they take it down.

  4. Hi Shane,
    Good to see that you are back in action and with full of energy and passion that no one can suppress. Those who harass, intimidate and torture others to stop getting exposed will always lose. Your path is always clear and you do not deviate from that path. Those with money will run in all direction only to find that their all roads are closed if they are trying to hide the truth. The power of truth is unlimited whereas the power of money is very limited. Good luck and all the best for the New Year 2019.

  5. I am personally acquainted with used car salesmen who are honest and just, but know how to drive hard bargains.
    To refer to corrupt judiciary as used car salesmen would miss the point entirely.

    It is an appalling standard of honesty chronicled before us, in the plight of Shane Dowling, who has campaigned single handedly, for the right of any citizen, whatever his status, to expose serious corruption.

    Simply put, Shane has exposed the appalling state of law and the justice system (together) in Australia, as “for sale”. The injustice of it, is far more diverse than Capilano honey.
    It’s the “little people” at the bottom of the pile who suffer the worst and lose the most, by the injustice that “justice for sale” is.

    When I sat in the public gallery of the court room on the fateful day in October last year, and watched in horror Shane Dowling, surrounded by a small platoon of guards, marched downstairs to the lock up, a fire was lit inside of me which will burn to the day I die.

    Only those among us who have experienced the devastation of confinement in a prison, really know what the loss of freedom is. But to be separated from those freedoms as Shane unjustly was, is outrageous.

    The standards of this country continue to slide towards the bottom, under the control of dodgy and corrupt politicians, prepared to offer themselves for sale, but it is much worse when the judiciary are guilty of the same crime.

    • Hi Dan,

      Please keep that fire burning. I am also fighting against the highest level systemic corruption in our country from June 2006. The latest high profile person after Mr Ahmed Fahour-former MD and Group CEO of Australia Post on 5.6 Million a year remuneration that resigned is our former Prime Minister the Hon Malcolm Turnbull.

      Has anyone answered the question yet “Why Mr Turnbull had to go?” Our main stream media failed to get that answer and they failed to respond to my numerous letters to them as well.

      Both these millionaires are aware of my fight for justice, fight against the judicial corruption, police corruption, Australia Post’s corruption and crimes cover ups. What did they do? Just shut up to see if I will go away. I have not and I will not.

      When the democracy failed, judicial integrity failed. politicians failed, Ombudsman failed, media failed I started petition on to Ms Christine Holgate-new
      MD & Group CEO of Australia Post after Mr Fahour left. She does not respond at all.

      Fortunately the petition and the updates and supporters comments are now available on Google just by typing in Google “petition Vasant Wagh”. few document images are also on Google. The supporter number has now jumped to 8389 and keeps growing.

      Supporting Shane to fight against the judicial corruption is very important because if the corrupt judicial processes win the death of democracy will not be far away.

      I am also fighting alone but the people that fight alone will not remain alone for ever. The courage that Shane displays is remarkable and I hope his support will grow enormously because the people of this country have had enough.

  6. Talking about ex parte reminded me on my case that I initiated in the Qld Supreme Court. Three times the case was heard without me being notified. Shades of a Kangaroo Court, indeed.

  7. It’s been a most hard row to hoe. I admire your fortitude and patience, many other would have crumbled.
    I know from my own experience how Senior Solicitors (even in government) will totally offend the laws of the courts and evidence, yet they are not prosecuted for such. At best they lay cheap low level fruit as appeasement to go away and have destroyed all evidence of misconduct and wrongful acts or judgements.
    Perhaps we need a law that simply states; where a licensed and practising party of the legal profession knowingly acts in such a manner as to intentionally cause a detrimental outcome, including imprisonment of an innocent party then that legal professional must serve an equivalent time in Prison or a same penalty damage as that of the innocent who became victim of improper legal practices of said legal professional.
    That might change things a little.
    Always in your support corner.

    • The only way to clean up our Governments both State and Federal is to keep Lawyers out of public office, they are an insidious disease unchecked.

  8. One has to ask where the corporate watchdog ASIC had been in hiding, as this matter was akin to the corporate regulator and their failure to properly apprehend the magnitude of failure to enforce their active service charter. [see below]

    “The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) is an independent Australian government body that acts as Australia’s corporate regulator. ASIC’s role is to enforce and regulate company and financial services laws to protect Australian consumers, investors and creditors.”

    The Federal Attorney General’s is charged with overseeing the performance of ASIC, (which must also oversee the role of the Chairman of ASIC) this goes to demonstrate that the Attorney General’s office as an appropriately higher level of authority that must oversee the roles and functions of the ASIC Corporate regulator.

    To add further emphasis to this complex matter one must turn to the key individual in the ASIC structure, that happens to be its appointed Chairman, this person is given the highest responsible role above all others in the ASIC Charter. That key individual was the recently departed Chairman Mr. Greg Medcraft. It is here one is drawn into the reasoning for the departure of this towering person of ethics and fidelity.

    The 2nd link is necessary, albeit appearing as an entirely separate reference, this link provides the names the persons of senior capacity appointed to ensure that ASIC properly enacts its Service Charter and fulfills its obligatory role to deliver the enforcement of its powers of authority.

    The roles of ASIC must incorporate the period of engagement by the chairman of 7 West Media who had engaged in the legal shit-fighting that involved itself, notably as a major Australian corporation.
    “Seven West Media Limited is an ASX-listed media company and is Australia’s largest diversified media business, its Chairman, Mr. Kerry Stokes.”

    ASIC was nowhere to be found to lean its powers of authority to question the inappropriateness of this major Australian company buying its improper influences over the NSW Supreme Court’s members of the that State’s Judiciary.

    The matter of Shane’s plight was given the blind eye by ASIC which follows that the Federal Attorney General’s office under the stamp of Senator George Brandis QC, was also a participant that had to offer interference in light of one considering the misuse of the Australian Law Court system.
    I have detailed this comment to add the appropriate significance of these 2 others (ASIC and Federal Attorney George Brandis QC) who held an obligation to halt the contra-actions of Mr. Kerry Stokes.

    • Great post mate, I was once the victim of a massive corporate fraud in the shopping center industry, it was that big ASIC and the ACCC covered it up to protect the super funds invested in the centers (16 Centers) Both these limp-wristed Government Fronts controlled by Treasury are a pack of minders not protectors

    • THAT is what I would like to know. Why are the supermarkets still selling it!? I have a bottle of Capilano honey in my pantry and I have been giving it to my sick child!!!! WTH!! I’m this minute heading off to the supermarket to get some answers Arghhhh!!!!

  9. After 30 years of working in corrections one becomes numb towards, Honesty, Integrity, and fairness, but is never amazed at the out comes of some.

  10. It has been anounced today (13/1/19) that Justice Margaret Beazley who headed up the Court of Appeal in the above judgment, Capilano Honey v Shane Dowling, has just been named as NSW’s next governor-general starting in May:

    Justice Beazley will replace David Hurley as governor in early May when the former general and Defence Force chief will become Australia’s governor-general.

    Born in Sydney in 1951, Justice Beazley has served as a judge of the Federal Court, the NSW Court of Appeal and is president of the Court of Appeal.

    Read more:

  11. Outstanding, I support this page as you are a role model for all Australians. I am in a battle with the DPI over dams in a drought, nothing like banging your head against a brick wall. You are an inspiration!

  12. I have sent an email and attachment to the new editor Anthony De Ceglie,West Australian Newspapers asking that they report and make public your story. I await with bated breath.

    • Came here to say the same thing, media outlets are only as independent in their reporting as their owners allow them to be.

      • You are spot on there. Our only daily newspaper , weekend newspaper and one tv station here in Western Australia is owned and controlled by Seven West Media (Kerry Stokes). What hope do we have for unbiased reporting?

  13. Honey is not honey anymore. As a child in South Sudan, I use to dance on the sieve over the round metal container untill the real gold dripped from the combs … my grandmother though that it was funny whylst I was scorned by my aunties. One of my best childhood memory. Our problem is that most people don’t know what real honey tastes like.

  14. One of the many questions on my mind, being the fate of the lying lawyers along with the principal person at the head of it all the law abusing Kerry Stokes?
    No amount of wrongs must ever constitute a right.

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