Today, in water still wet news, A Current Affair has been formally reprimanded after a investigative report on former Australian Olympic gold medalist Neil Brooks was found to have breached Australian Communications and Media Authority codes relating to accuracy, privacy and complaints handling
The half-hour Inception horns reliant tabloid news program and natural enemy to tradesmen everywhere aired a 19 minute report last year in which Brooks was labelled “a disgrace to Australia” and “one of Australia’s most notorious conmen”, put under surveillance and in accordance with the show’s MO badgered and ambushed by reporters to answer loaded questions about his part in an alleged Ponzi scheme spanning three continents.
The 32 page ACMA investigation ruled that “the program had insufficient evidence to support its claim during a 5
March, 2012 broadcast that police in Australia, the United States and
France were investigating allegations of fraud against the former
swimmer and his wife,” but found that other allegations pertaining to his alleged fraudulent activity did not breach provisions because evidence provided by Brooks and ACA was inconclusive or they just weren’t “factual material”. So, you know, he might yet be a degenerate conman. Police just aren’t investigating him or weren’t at the time of airing.
The segment was also ruled to have breached privacy codes by
planting hessian sacks with money signs on Brooks’ property televising the French address of the swimmer’s wife, Linda Brooks. A third breach was identified after the program failed to adequately respond to Brooks’ complaints.
As Brooks so eloquently puts it: “You are the biggest shit stirrer in Australia.”