by Mary W Maxwell, LLB
In my opinion, they would have been wiser to kill her. That would have led to sorrow and frustration among citizens, and no further action. Well, thank God they didn’t. Serene Teffaha is strutting around and can easily become the biggest thorn-in-the-side Australia’s courts have ever had. And an innovator, which is her strong suit anyway. A most welcome development!
Teffaha got on the wrong side of the Powers That Wish They Could Be Except They’re Too Slow (PTWTCBETTS). She started a law firm whose website is AdvocateMe.com.au. I only know two of her main subject matters – the Covid Lockdown caper and the Let’s Steal Kids from Their Protective Parent caper. So I will assume for purposes of this short GumshoeNews bulletin that either or both of those is the reason for her disbarment.
They are killing us off with their tests!
“Why don’t you just ask the officials why they disbarred her, Mary?” Because of course they are too …um… prevaricatorious. They’ll never come out with it. They never come out with anything recognizable as reality. Judging by the warning she was given, it had “something to do with her breaching the privacy act.” She said so in her beautiful “I laugh, I cry” video.
Don’t you be cryin’, Serene. The whole country’s got your back. There’s not an Aussie in sight who prefers the PTWTCBETTS to a nice gal like you.
I suggest you contact every person who signed up for your big class action against Covid dumbass restrictions and see if they are willing to let you keep the $250 that each paid. Then you use that to establish a …um… what to call it. I mean a court, as in a newly formed court. The French word for court is cour, but that’s too similar to the English. The Portuguese word is quanda. The Norwegian is domstol. The Catalan is jutjat.
Let’s go for jutjat, for now. It’s where people can go to get justice. Like what we used to have, called “the court” – still in living memory to some of us.
Who can be allowed to practice law in the new jutjat? Well, anyone who already has credentials for the old court can come in, but a group of “serenities” will be there to suspend them if they are not “quality,” OK? Plus new people can join, ones who never before “were called to the Bar.”
What is the Bar anyway? The one that disbarred Ms Traffaha the other day is a private entity within the state of Victoria that has been awarded some special status by a legislative gift known as a statute. I think of the Bar as being like the AMA in America that accredits medical schools and doctors. By whose leave? By leave of a now-suspect statute.
Have a look at the Encyclopedia Britannica’s entry on The Inns of Court, namely Lincoln’s Inn, Gray’s Inn, the Middle Temple and the Inner temple, in London:
“The Inns of Court are voluntary societies, unchartered and unincorporated. Hence, their early history is obscure. Since their inception in the Middle Ages, however, they have been devoted to the technical study of English law, rather than Roman law. Previously, law was learned in the course of service [as] in private clerkship to some official. By the mid-13th century, when the common law had become extensive and intricate, there arose a class of men, literate but lay, who created and dominated the legal profession and set up the Inns of Court as an answer to the problem of legal education.”
So OK, it’s now the 21st Century, not the 13th, and we are not in UK, we’re in the South Paciff. We can establish ways for concerned adults to become good at law. Not silly at law. Not mean at law. Good at law.
I’m afraid the examples that come to mind of lawyers being good at law are not too many. How about this video of a medical doctor, Russell Pridgeon teaching the law. I love it when he says, at 64 seconds: “We have a right to protect our children even against court-ordered sexual abuse.” (I’ve heard on the grapevine that he wanted to say “court-ordered rape” but decided not to be too provocative that day. He was wearing a leg monitor, having been arrested for rescuing children from terror and abuse.)
Pridgeon said “Over a period of 18 months these children, age 4 and 5, made disclosures of abuse 40 times to 13 persons, yet the police interviewed only one of those persons.” The old court habitually closes its eye to such statements by kids. But the jutjat will be attentive. Naturally. “It’s only natural.”
The Guardian made this report about Serene:
“According to a report in the Queensland Times, magistrate Anthony Gett referred her to that state’s Legal Services Commission over submissions in court that he said “may be prejudicial to or diminish the public confidence in the administration of justice”.
What a scream. They don’t even seem to know when they are making folds of themselves.
“Teffaha had reportedly said a child taken by an alleged child-stealing syndicate had been “let down” by the police and judiciary and the court was “enabling” his abuse. She told the Guardian that the complaint had been “transferred” to the Victorian Legal Services Board, which had sent her correspondence ‘basically saying we’re going to cancel your licence.’ But while the initial referral appeared to relate to her comments in Queensland, the Guardian understands the VLSB may also be inquiring into the class actions she has raised money for throughout the pandemic.”
Can you imagine!
Actually, you could imagine, if you already knew about the disbarment in of George Potkonyak, a very good solicitor in New South Wales. I guess you could call his behavior in court “anticipatory jutjat.” I’m quoting him here from his submission to a 2018 Senate Inquiry, as cited in my 2018 book Reunion: Judging the Family Court, page 41. Potkonyak had written:
The Childrens Court is the first point of call. Each proceeding in the Childrens Court is presided over by a single Childrens Magistrate. … The proceeding is closed to the public …. The District Court is the court to which a party dissatisfied with the final decision of the Childrens Court may “appeal” that decision, as of right. However …there is a catch: the proceeding in the District Court is a new hearing; there is no review of the decision of the Children’s Court for an alleged error of law or error of fact… Whatever went … in the Childrens Court is swept under the carpet and will never see the daylight….
The Act empowers the Family and Community Services to receive and record “risk of harm reports” about any child from mandatory reporters or from any member of public. … If one of the risk-of-harm reports is considered to be serious enough (usually an arbitrary decision by a case worker) the child is removed … and placed into temporary foster care… [Note: it makes no sense to remove from a child from its Protective parent here.] One would expect that this stage of the proceedings, where the court is to establish whether the child is a child in need of care, is where the evidence would be tested according to law. Not so. It does not matter which kind of “trial” takes place, the magistrate will inevitably find that “the child is a child in need of care and protection.”
Potkonyak’s criticism of the system may sound harsh but it could be much harsher. His point is that you can’t win. As he says, you would think evidence would be tested according to law, but it isn’t. The Family Law Act specifically dispenses itself from The Evidence Act — and Childrens Courts seem lawless. A state can snatch a child as it wishes. You simply have no comeback!
When George appealed his disbarment, a three-judge appeal panel said this:
“The Commissioner’s application raised a number of grounds of complaint, including that Mr Potkonyak had: conducted himself inappropriately in court by making various offensive and unsubstantiated [!] statements about a Children’s Court magistrate and the opposing parties; breached his duties to the administration of justice and his clients [no he didn’t]; misled the court; and consistently engaged in conduct falling short of the standard of competence and diligence expected of a reasonably competent legal practitioner”
Most solicitors, knowing this will happen to them if they resist the cruelty of the court, take the safe route: silence.
Bottom line for now: the disbarring of young Serene is a boon to Australia. It opens the gate wide. New ideas and practices can come in. New training. New method of approval of person who want to practice law. New criteria for getting rid of the undesirables.
A jutjat in the Southern continent can set an example to the world!
Thank you, Ms Teffaha of AdvocateMe.com.au. Thank you, jerks who disbarred her. Thank you, God. I knew there would be a way out of our trap and it happened on April 15, 2021.
An URGENT message to all readers. I (Dee McLachlan) am assisting a mother in a number of court challenges. These have become urgent and are of huge importance in child abduction matters — especially challenging the blanket immunity of social workers and public servants working in child ‘protection’. We are calling out for urgent donations to raise a few thousand so that a solicitor can be paid to brief a barrister and for assistance in writing an appeal document. I cannot stress how urgent and important these matters are and will keep all readers and supporters informed as to the progress of these matters over the next few months and weeks. Many thanks.