Sorry Saga - “It’s actually quite funny people thinking they know more than they actually do”


Not true. They have been doing plenty of the bullying.


The AFL needs to show support of ASADA’s position initially.

If they don’t show support initially then it would be hard for them to argue later that it is an important issue.


Crown Pathology & Testing Inc.


From a legal point of view against Jackson yes I have no doubts but they failed at that it seems as it’s still going to court.

As for against Bruce he’d lap it up.

But I’m more talking about what happened to club, players and and officials through saga.


Bastion Anti Doping

“We take the ■■■■”


Clean Sportsbet

So BT, what’s the odds on big Joey Daniher getting through the season without a strike


C7 got a court gag order against Amber Harrison in regard to her NDA relating to company information as well as her affair with Warner. C7 subsequently began further action against her for contempt of court ( which could carry a custodial sentence) . It has since climbed down to seeking a Declaration - without penalty - that she had breached the gag order. It has also confirmed that it will not seek costs.
C7 lost the PR war on this one and Warner ( one of Gil’s mates) was forced to stand down from the Swans Board.
There were some mutterings about Hird breaching his NDA, but AFL squashed any consideration of action. Also to bear in mind that Tania sat in on her husband’s proceedings and did not sign a confidentiality agreement.
Leaving aside any legalities, journos love a whistleblower ( as do most of the public) and in most cases succeed in refusals to name their source ( as they have done in the Michaela Cash business).
Buzzfeed has set up a dedicated signal line for whistleblowers to get around hackers.


Blitz first.

Brendan Schwab on Sports Integrity and Athletes’ Rights: A Global Perspective Mr Brendan Schwab discusses Sports Integrity and Athletes Rights at the Justice For The 34 Symposium, 21 November 2017.

Introduction by Ms Tracey Holmes, ABC Sports Journalists.

Brendan Schwab Sports Integrity and Athletes’ Rights Symposium Panelist.

Brendan is a human rights lawyer and Executive Director of World Players’ Association.

Brendan Schwab, Executive Director, World Players Association, uniting 85,000 players across professional sport through more than 100 player associations in over 60 countries.

Brendan brings expertise in organising, labour and human rights law, collective bargaining and dispute resolution, particularly in professional team sports. Brendan has played an instrumental role for FIFPro, the world footballers association, in supporting players internationally.

He served FIFPro as a board member, Vice President and as Chair of FIFPro Asia/ Oceania. He acted as a judge of the FIFA Dispute Resolution Chamber and, as a member of the FIFA Players’ Status Committee, helped drive FIFA’s ban of the third-party ownership of players.

Brendan co-founded and led the Australian Athletes’ Alliance, which represents eight player associations and over 3,500 athletes in sports such as Australian rules, basketball, rugby union, rugby league, cricket, netball, horse racing and football.

He also co-founded Professional Footballers Australia (PFA), serving as Chief Executive and General Counsel, advancing its profession and the reform of the Australian football industry. He holds a Bachelor of Laws and a Master of Business Administration.


Additional material from the FoI reported recently:

Exchange between Australian Govt Solicitor and Member of the Public resulting from today’s column


Subject: RE: Member of the Public and Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED] [AGSDMS]

Good morning Member of the Public

The purpose of this email is to draw your attention to Part 5 of the AAT’s general practice direction (attached). Information which you obtain as part of the AAT proceedings must only be used or disclosed for the purpose of the proceedings, unless and until:

a) the AAT expressly releases you from that obligation

b) the information is tendered in an open hearing.

We ask that you adhere to the requirements of Part 5 in respect of information provided to you by ASADA in the course of this proceeding. (ASADA will, of course, do the same).


Party Pooper


Dear Party Pooper

I acknowledge receipt of your email and thank you for drawing my attention to Part 5.

As a matter of interest, have you sent similar emails to the AFL and ASADA about the Herald Sun story?

You are a very brave man assuring me that ASADA won’t leak. I assume you are also implying the AFL won’t leak!

I don’t want to disillusion you but the AFL and ASADA are responsible for more leaks than the MCG men’s toilets on a hot Boxing Day Test between Australia and England.


Member of the Public


Dear Member of the Public

That is some evocative imagery you have conjured!

I can assure you that ASADA is aware of its obligations under the implied undertaking. AGS does not act for the AFL. When you serve your material on us we will decide whether it is necessary to share any of it with the AFL. If we do so, we will remind them of the effect of the implied undertaking.


Party Pooper


Dear Party Pooper

I have been homebound for 12 years. I have to amuse myself.

I thought you needed a laugh as a reward for sending me a soft admonishment letter.

I assumed that AGS was too conservative to act for the AFL. I suspect the AFL uses the same legal team as the mob or mafia


Member of the Public


Guys, I just need a little help sending an email to the labor candidate for Batman.

Can anyone confirm that asada submitted evidence that they knew to be false, and is there a link?

Was there any one or two facts where we know that a Labor politician tried to influence the process? I’m sure early on there was political pressure, but was it ever confirmed?


That is my understanding.

In addition, a Labor Senator excused McDevitt from misleading Parliament. Highly unusual for an Opposition member to pre-empt the Government and act as a spokesman for them.


Tinhillterror, fact 23 provided by Bruce Francis today might help you.

Caroline Wilson knows no shame.

Despite the overwhelming evidence of gross misconduct, possibly fraud and corruption, by the AFL during the Essendon saga, last week on Melbourne radio station 3AW she claimed there was nothing worth investigating.

I guess next she will be condoning what transpired between neighbours in Cecil Street and Howe Crescent, South Melbourne. Strange how The Age has been silent on that story while leaping to condemn just about every other example of it.

To me there is nothing more abhorrent than a journalist who doesn’t want to seek truth and justice.

When I watch movies like Spotlight, The Post and All The President’s Men, I have nothing but admiration for the journalists portrayed in them who took huge risks to present the truth to the public.

I can have nothing but contempt for Wilson, and for those who rewarded her flawed reporting of the Essendon case with a Walkley.

Obviously, the reason she is counselling people to stop seeking the truth about and justice for the 34 Essendon players is because her flawed and biased reportage will be revealed, most notably her support of the AFL.

Her infamous “sources close to The Age” who were a hell of a lot closer to some of the AFL’s operatives.

They too, are hoping people will just go away so that their corrupt activities won’t be exposed.

One of the real problems with the AFL is that its officials are accountable to no one but themselves; a situation they have ruthlessly exploited to the cost of many in the game and for their own mutual benefit through deals which are clearly a conflict of interest and/or, I am comfortably satisfied, fraudulent.

The grand artifice of the Essendon saga - outcomes decided before any inquiry was made, no due process, doctoring of evidence, continuing to sell tickets to Essendon members even though the Commissioners had already decided to kick them out of finals - are all proof of that.

Another reason for Wilson’s latest sophistry might be to re-ingratiate herself to Liz Lukin.

We all thought that the penny had finally dropped with Wilson when she found herself on the wrong end of the Lukin approach to communications and public relations and went public with her disquiet.

Possibly without the drip-feed from the AFL, she can no longer find a story.

Well I’ve got plenty for her.

FACT 1: On 9 February 2013, ASADA executives Aurora Andruska, Elen Perdikogiannis, Trevor Burgess and Paul Simonsson; AFL deputy CEO Gillon McLachlan and integrity manager Brett Clothier; Essendon chairman David Evans and Essendon CEO Ian Robson; and the Federal Labor government’s most senior bureaucrat responsible for sport Richard Eccles, met at ASADA’s headquarters in Canberra. Source: Aurora Andruska’s Affidavit to Justice Middleton’s Federal Court hearing, and Chip Le Grand’s book, The Straight Dope, page 29.

FACT 2: During the meeting Eccles asked McLachlan: ‘What is it you are after?’ Andruska’s spiral notebook records McLachlan’s response: ‘Come to arrangement. Players found to be innocent. This is the outcome. Sanctions against Essendon. Held responsible. Hold individuals accountable.’ Source: The Straight Dope page 30. Footnote 20 – (page 275) - The 9 February 2013 exchange between Richard Eccles and Gillon McLachlan is reconstructed from notes taken by Aurora Andruska and Paul Simonsson and the transcript of Andruska’s testimony to the Federal Court on 12 August 2014, VID 327 of 2014 p 170.

MY OPINION which was shared by former Labor Minister Graham Richardson and broadcaster Alan Jones on their Sky News programme 8 December 2015: Agreeing on the result of the AFL/ASADA investigation four days before the first witness was interviewed is no different from fixing the result of an AFL match or a cricket match.

FACT 3: All attendees at the 9 February 2013 meeting, with the exception of Andruska, agreed with McLachlan’s demands. Andruska didn’t accept that the players were innocent through ‘no fault’.

FACT 4: The Essendon board endorsed the agreement made by chairman David Evans, Ian Robson and Gillon McLachlan that the players were innocent; the club was responsible and would be sanctioned; and that individuals would be held accountable.

OPINION: As the first witness hadn’t even been interviewed at this stage the participants in the 9 February meeting were acting corruptly in agreeing on the outcome. Evans agreed to sacrifice Hird and the club in return for the players and the Essendon board being exonerated. This created the opportunity for the fraud to take place.

FACT 5: David Evans told James Hird in March 2013 to tell the players that they wouldn’t be penalised. No player had been interviewed at this stage, which meant that it was impossible to know whether they had been administered a banned substance or not.

OPINION: Evans’s conversation with Hird was confirmation that the deal done on 9 February 2013 by McLachlan, ASADA, the Gillard government and Essendon was being enforced.

FACT 6: Saturday 13 April 2013, AFL commissioner Bill Kelty told Hird about a telephone hook-up between the AFL commissioners on Thursday 11 April 2013. McLachlan put forward arguments for why Hird should be stood down from his job – if not by Essendon then by the AFL. At this stage Hird had denied any wrong-doing by the club. Furthermore, he had not even been interviewed by the ASADA/AFL investigators at that stage. Source: The Straight Dope and a conversation with James Hird.

FACT 7: The commissioners who took part in the telephone hook-up were required to sit on the jury if charges were laid after the completion of the investigation. Yet, clearly, McLachlan had been given information from the investigators, which he passed onto the jury.

OPINION: It is arguable whether McLachlan should have been briefed on the evidence by the investigators. It is irrefutable that the jury (the commissioners) should not have been briefed on the information. It is irrefutable that Hird was denied procedural fairness.

FACT 8: On 25 June 2013, David Evans asked James Hird in front of Essendon doctor Bruce Reid if he would accept a three-month suspension and accept Essendon forfeiting its premiership points and its place in the finals series Source: The Straight Dope page 152 and my personal conversations with Hird and Reid.

OPINION: Although Evans acknowledged that Hird hadn’t done anything wrong, he was attempting to deliver on the agreement he made with McLachlan, ASADA and the Gillard government on 9 February 2013.

FACT 9: Everything that McLachlan demanded, and everything the other attendees agreed to, was realised in August 2013, when the AFL exonerated the players; fined Essendon FC $2 million and penalised individuals James Hird, Danny Corcoran and Mark Thompson.

FACT 10: Although AFL CEO Andrew Demetriou was required by the AFL constitution to sit on the ‘jury’ if charges were laid, he was briefed on the evidence on virtually a daily basis.

FACT 11: Demetriou made numerous public statements between 7 February 2013 and 26 August 2013 implying that Essendon was guilty.

OPINION: This denied Essendon, Hird, Corcoran and Thompson procedural fairness (natural justice).

FACT 12: Although the AFL commissioners were required by the AFL constitution to sit on the ‘jury’ if charges were laid, they were briefed on the evidence from time-to-time during 2013.

OPINION: This denied Essendon, Hird, Corcoran and Thompson procedural fairness (natural justice).

FACT 13: On 13 April 2013, AFL commissioner Bill Kelty told James Hird about a telephone hook-up between AFL commissioners on 11 April 2013. He revealed that during the discussion, McLachlan put forward arguments for why Hird should be stood down from his job – if not by Essendon then by the AFL. Hird was portrayed as the architect of the Essendon drugs regime. People are likening him to Lance Armstrong. All this before Hird was interviewed by the investigators. (Source: The Straight Dope page 140).

FACT 14: As Hird was on a different branch of the organisation structure from the football department (where the supplement program was run) he had no legal power to interfere with the program or the football department staff.

OPINION: The Victorian OH&S Act (2004) indicates that 32 people at the AFL and Essendon had more responsibility for providing a safe work place than Hird – the 10 AFL commissioners, Gillon McLachlan, Adrian Anderson, Dr Harcourt, Brett Clothier, the human resource director and the OH&S manager; and the nine Essendon board members, Paul Hamilton, Dean Robinson, Stephen Dank, two doctors, the human resource manager and the OH&S manager.

FACT 15: ASADA changed Ian Robson’s evidence in order to create a case against Hird. When asked about the reporting protocols at Essendon Robson said “Dean Robinson reported to general manager football operations Paul Hamilton.” ASADA created the case against Hird by inserting in square brackets [and James Hird]. Robinson did not report to Hird.

OPINION: This corruption enabled the AFL, ASADA and Essendon to build a case against James Hird. Source: The Essendon organisation structure and Hird’s job description.

FACT 16: Paragraph 13(1)(f) of the ASADA Act and clause 3.27(1) of the National Anti-Doping Scheme authorise ASADA’s chief executive Officer to investigate possible anti-doping rule violations by athletes or athlete support personnel. The interim report did not include conclusions findings or recommendations regarding potential Anti-Doping Rules Violations. Source: Interim Report page 13.

FACT 17: Unbeknown to the players and support staff, the investigators widened their investigation to include governance issues at Essendon. Although the investigators had no human resource qualifications they not only investigated Essendon recruitment of Dean Robinson and Stephen Dank but included conclusions and recommendations.

OPINION: Widening the investigation to include recruitment matters at Essendon was a clear breach of the ASADA Act. As there was to be “no conclusions findings or recommendations regarding potential Anti-Doping Rules Violations”, breaching the ASADA Act was clearly designed to enable the AFL to fraudulently acquire $2 million from Essendon, and to penalise Hird, Corcoran and Thompson.

FACT 18: On 18 April 2013, AFL integrity manager Brett Clothier wrote to ASADA’s Darren Mullaly requesting ASADA provide an interim report to inform any disciplinary actions the AFL takes against Essendon.

OPINION: This was clearly another step to enable the AFL to fraudulently acquire $2 million from Essendon, and to enable it to penalise Hird, Corcoran and Thompson. The investigation was set up to ascertain whether any player had been administered a WADA banned substance. As the interim report was not to include “conclusions findings or recommendations regarding potential Anti-Doping Rules Violations”, Clothier’s request to the investigators to include information to inform disciplinary actions the AFL could take against Essendon, it was clearly to help the AFL fraudulently to acquire $2 million from Essendon.

FACT 19: David Evans gave the Essendon commissioned Switkowski Report (into governance at Essendon) to ASADA and the AFL to help it create a case against Essendon and James Hird. This enabled the AFL to fraudulently acquire $2 million from Essendon.

OPINION: Evans agreed to sacrifice Hird and the club in return for the players and the Essendon board being exonerated.

FACT 20: At a meeting with ASADA in mid-June 2013, McLachlan said Essendon is guilty and if it plays in the 2013 finals series, it will undermine the competition for ten years. The AFL will not let this happen.

OPINION: The investigation had not been completed at this stage. No charges had been laid. But McLachlan had decided not only was Essendon guilty but what one of the penalties would be. Clearly, this was corruption of the highest order.

FACT 21: In June 2013, the AFL commissioners were told that Essendon would be banned from playing in the finals series. The AFL told Ms Gillard’s representative. Richard Eccles, this decision. On 13 June 2013, Eccles told ASADA’s chief operating officer Trevor Burgess this decision. Chip Le Grand stated in The Straight Dope, “The AFL is preparing to take on the Essendon support staff. James Hird is looking at a ban of six months or longer.” Source: The Straight Dope footnote 41 page 40, Trevor Burgess diary notes from his 13 June 2013 conversation with Richard Eccles were tendered to the Federal Court on 13 August 2014 VID No 327 of 2014.

FACT 22: Although the AFL commissioners were required by the AFL constitution to sit on the ‘jury’ if charges were laid, they were not only told by the end of June that Essendon was guilty but they were told what some of the penalties would be.

OPINION: This denied Essendon, Hird, Corcoran and Thompson procedural fairness (natural justice).

FACT 23: On 4 June 2013, ASADA CEO Aurora Andruska and senior ASADA lawyer Elen Perdikogiannis spoke to Glenys Beauchamp, deputy secretary Department of Sport. The handwritten notes taken by Perdikogiannis record the following: “9.00am conversation with Glenys Beauchamp [Secretary, Department of Regional Australia, Local Government, Arts and Sport] with AA [Aurora Andruska]. Clear instructions from Min [Minister Lundy] – her colleagues at her, accusing her of hampering chances of re-election – you need an outcome. Andruska said the minister was demanding no players be sacked. According to court documents Andruska’s notes of that 4 June meeting said: “Lundy needs something – (a) deal with AFL; support staff sacked; points [taken] off [Essendon]; players off.”

OPINION: It is impossible not to see this meeting as anything other than the Gillard government, the AFL, and ASADA conspiring to find Essendon, Hird, and support staff guilty and for them to deliver on the 9 February 2013 deal to exonerate the players, sanction Essendon and punish Hird and other individuals [Corcoran and Thompson].

FACT 24: On 5 June 2013, ASADA’s lead investigator John Nolan expressed concern that Andruska was serving the “political agenda”.

OPINION: Andruska’s actions were fulfilling the commitment made on 9 February 2013. Without ASADA’s compliance the AFL would have found it more difficult to defraud Essendon of $2 million.

FACT 25: Melbourne solicitor Jackson Taylor lodged a statement of claim in the Victorian Supreme Court in which he alleged that the AFL continued to sell special seating packages to Essendon members for the 2013 finals series matches in which Essendon were participating. All this after the AFL had decided to ban Essendon from playing in the final series.

OPINION: Taylor withdrew his claim when he was required to lodge a huge bond that was required to meet the AFL’s costs if he lost.

FACT 26: During a conversation between ASADA CEO Andruska and McLachlan on 26 June 2013, the ASADA head noted McLachlan’s comments as follows: “Take points off Essendon.” “Take bits out [of the interim report] that might compromise what we need (my emphasis).

OPINION: This demand was indicative of the constant contamination of the investigatory process by external influences and agendas. The issuing of an interim report and the content of that report indicates that ASADA accommodated McLachlan’s demands of 9 February 2013. McLachlan needed ASADA to take bits out so that the AFL could sanction Essendon, which it did to the tune of $2 million plus.

FACT 27: Before July 2013, ASADA’s chief operating officer Trevor Burgess wrote to McLachlan. Inter alia, he said, “ASADA confirms we will provide a confidential report to the AFL … Specifically, the report will include conclusions on the environment at Essendon (my emphasis).

OPINION: This inclusion was part of a strategy to build a case against Essendon, which would enable the AFL to sanction Essendon to the tune of $2 million. Clearly, the ASADA Act did not provide for ASADA commenting upon the environment at Essendon.

FACT 28: Andruska attended a meeting with AFL officials Demetriou, Clothier and senior counsel Andrew Dillon on 24 July 2013. Demetriou stated that: “Two or three things cannot afford to be made public (my emphasis).

OPINION: If the two or three things had been made public, the AFL would not have been able to fine Essendon $2 million.

FACT 29: On 15 July 2013, lead ASADA investigator John Nolan asked Abraham Haddad of the AFL to prepare a tabloid account of the injections based on assumptions and a formula. When given the figures, Nolan said: “Not really what we are looking for … If we add the multivitamin aspect, then it is a little more convincing.” (my emphasis).

OPINION: Nothing could be clearer. ASADA fabricated the figures when its outrageous assumptions and dubious formulae didn’t deliver the horror picture it was looking for to help the AFL build the case against Essendon. This is a further example of ASADA conspiring with the AFL to help it defraud Essendon.

FACT 30: On 7 August 2013, McLachlan bullied and blackmailed new Essendon chairman Paul Little to accept draconian penalties against Essendon, Hird, Corcoran and Thompson. Hird, Corcoran and Thompson will testify to this effect. I understand there is a tape recording of this meeting, which I can access at the appropriate time

FACT 31: McLachlan bullied and blackmailed Hird to accept the penalties.

FACT 32: McLachlan lied to Herald Sun journalists Jon Ralph and Carly Crawford on 8 August 2013, when he told them that the AFL hadn’t decided whether to lay charges against Essendon and its staff.

FACT 33: AFL general counsel Andrew Dillon made it clear that he intended using the Interim Report to take disciplinary action against Essendon.

FACT 34: Dillon released to the media/public a 34-page charge sheet against Essendon, Hird, Corcoran, Thompson and Dr Reid.

OPINION: The charge sheet was full of vexatious allegations that could not be substantiated. It was clearly designed and distributed to the public in order to poison the public’s minds against Essendon, Hird, Corcoran and Thompson. One of Dillon’s charges was “players were administered substances that were prohibited by the AFL Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Code”. A second charge was The Thymosin referred to on the “Patient Information/Informed Consent” forms and administered to the players was: Thymosin Beta-4 which is prohibited by the AFL Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Code (the relevant facts in relation to this allegation are set out in Annexure A to this Notice of Charge); There was no evidence to support these two charges at that stage. As stated in FACT 16, the interim report, from which Dillon created his charges, said: “The interim report did not include conclusions findings or recommendations regarding potential Anti-Doping Rules Violations. Source: Interim Report page 13. Therefore, at the very least Dillon was guilty of misconduct, if not corruption. This ploy made it easier for the AFL to defraud Essendon of $2 million.

Bruce Francis


Anger rising


Yeah, but aside from that, was there anything sinister or inappropriate going on?


Wowee, yep SWSNBS is right. Nothing to see there.

Nothing at all.

Should be entertaining listening when it comes out.

Man do I want Gil to go down for what he’s done.


I’ve got some tape for McDevitt:

How’s that sound ■■■■-head?



Quick question - did the Greens support Madigan in the Senate regarding Order for the Production of docs to Susan Ley?

I think so, but I need to be sure.


Yes they did.


Well, this makes me angry.

The Australian Government Solicitor assuring a Member of the Public (lets say, for argument’s sake and typing convenience, we call him Bruce) that ASADA is aware of privacy obligations.

Bahahaha. This is a joke, right?

All Blitzers were witnesses to 100’s of defamatory articles appearing in newspapers, most of which appeared the following day, during the ASADA investigation of Essendon.

Did ASADA stop or even attempt to stop these leaks? No.

Did ASADA withhold sensitive or defamatory information from their joint investigation partner so that this information might not be shared with the public? No.

Even worse, ASADA were complicit as they continued to share sensitive or defamatory information throughout the investigation knowing full well it would most likely be leaked to the public. This was shameful and horribly disrespectful behavior from one of our government authorities.

And now, when sensitive or defamatory information about ASADA is to be discussed, they spout off that it’s not fair to publicise it and Bruce should respect the authorities/AGS/AAT obligations…?

Two faced #$!*%(!^)#!

…I wrote another paragraph I was so mad, but I have deleted it…/end rant


The Greens under Di Natale have been strong supporters for justice in the Essendon matter. They supported Madigan’s motion for a senate inquiry and they supported his motion for the release of the documents. Also, in 2013 when Lundy, the ALP Sports Minister, sought to amend the ASADA Act to remove the right of athletes to remain silent, when questioned by ASADA, the Greens successfully opposed Lundy’s amendment Bill and the Act was not amended.

However, as we know that was why the AFL/ASADA joint investigation took place. ASADA relied on the AFL contracts with the players to compel the players to answer all questions. Justice Middleton, in his wisdom, decided contract law, that is the AFL contracts trumped statute law, that is the ASADA Act. So much for the primacy of parliament! Middleton found the clear intention of parliament to give the players the right to remain silent did not amount to anything.

And once the Executive arm of government, under both the ALP and Coalition, decided to raise the drawbridge the parliamentarians did their bidding. Thus McDevitt got away with lying on 3 March 2016, the documents Madigan sought were not produced and there has been no senate inquiry. The treatment of Essendon by successive governments and the parliament has destroyed by confidence in our system of government. (And Middleton’s decision has likewise stained the integrity of the federal Court.)