Packer protester charged

Alex Bainbridge will face court in a fortnight charged with the egregious wrong of "operate or use a loudspeaker or public address system" within cooee of the Opera House.

It's one of last year's quite brilliant regulations, which ban things like performing, collecting for charity, displaying posters, turning your radio up too loud, riding bikes and - heaven forbid - walking your dog.

Bainbridge is the eighth to be charged, and said the regulations were meant to combat terrorism, but "this makes it really clear it's about free speech". We'll keep you posted on how they go, but in the meantime, no dog-walking. And turn your radio down.

Source SMH:

The journo found out about this after reading this GLW article

Pip Hinman, Sydney

NSW police charged Socialist Alliance activist Alex Bainbridge on April 26 with “Use/operate a loudspeaker/public address system” for his involvement in a February 17 protest against the state-funded memorial service for deceased billionaire Kerry Packer.

On April 27, those who had been arrested and charged at the February 17 demonstration itself had their second court appearance. This revealed that the police intended to pursue the charges.

The charge against Bainbridge was brought under the relatively new Sydney Opera House by-law. This restricts democratic rights in the vicinity of the Opera House and is characterised by heavy penalties.