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Justinian's news stories

Innovations in fee collection ... Barrister lightly spanked for sending disturbing fee threat to former clients ... "See what happens if you don't pay your bills" ... File leverage ... Agreement not to complain in exchange for the file ... NCAT bares its gums ... Read more ... 

Justinian Columnists

Do nothing in the new utopia ... Policy vacuums ... Private sector leaders are filling voids created by sleepwalking politicians ... Voice to parliament and global warming left in the cold - which, somehow, gets us to the casualisation of the workforce, particularly at universities ... Fly-in, fly-out law school lecturers ... Full Federal Court wrestles with a "casual employee" ... Read more ... 

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Justinian's Bloggers

Time to act on Magnitsky ... Where's our Magnitsky Act? ... An effective way of dealing with corrupt individuals who violate human rights ... Lapsed Bill in the Commonwealth parliament ... The legacy of Russia's abuse of power and the calculated killing of state enemies ... Read more ... 

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    "I am really and truly pleased that I have been vindicated and that the court has preserved the presumption of innocence."   

    Tom Domican, "colourful" Sydney identity, who provided security services to a Kings Cross drug dealer, after settling for $100,000 his defamation case against nightclub entrepreneur John Ibrahim and Pan Macmillan. September 13, 2019 ... Read more flatulence ... 

    Justinian Featurettes

    David Hunt remembered ... Former NSW defamation judge and chief judge at common law ...The List with Socratic case management ... Defamation exotica ... Refinement of pleadings, perhaps over-refinement ... Prodigious worker ... International criminal law ... Tributes from Graham Hryce, David Rolph, Justice Mark Ierace and Judge Judith Gibson ... Read more ... 

    Justinian's archive

    Sentencing terror ... Fabulous sentencing transcript from County Court, Victoria ... Judge James Montgomery and counsel wrestle with the dates and the years ... Pythonesque proceedings ... Court reporter struggles to keep up ... Tears to the eyes ... From the archive, June 2012 ... Read more ... 



    « Michelle Gortan | Main | Jon Osbeiston - merchant of wine »

    Kristen Walker

    Constitutional, gender studies and human rights lawyer ... Refugee advocate ... Former associate to Mason CJ ... Finkelstein inquiry legal adviser ... Pancake eater ... Truly, Madly Deeply fan ... Kristen Walker is on Justinian's couch 

    Kristen Walker: with inspirationKristen Walker is a Melbourne barrister and until last year an associate professor of law at the University of Melbourne.

    She taught gender, sexuality and international human rights law at Columbia University law school and the University of Arizona. 

    After a stint as a commercial litigator at Arthur Robs she was an associate to High Court chief justice Sir Anthony Mason. 

    However, Kristen shot to fame as legal adviser to the Finkelstein inquiry into the media.

    The inquiry reported last month, recommending the creation of a government funded, independent media regulator - the News Media Council. 

    Krister Walker now finds herself on Justinian's couch, batting away our questions. 

    Describe yourself in three words.

    Smart, difficult, funny.

    What are you currently reading?

    "Convicting the Innocent" by Brandon Garrett - a terrible indictment of the US criminal justice system.

    "Permutation City" by Greg Egan - a novel about artificial intelligence.

    What's your favourite film?

    "Truly, Madly, Deeply."

    "The Alien" series.

    Who have been the most influential people in your life?

    My parents, my partner Miranda, my son Alfie and Sir Anthony Mason.

    What is your favourite piece of music?

    Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah", sung by kd lang.

    What is in your refrigerator?

    In the freezer I have homemade sheep's milk yoghurt icecream; in the fridge, baba ganoush from the Green Grocer in North Fitzroy.

    What is your favourite website? and YouTube videos with laughing babies or funny cats.

    What do you recommend as a hangover cure?


    What words or phrases do you overuse?

    Certain words not fit to print.

    What is your greatest weakness?

    I don't suffer fools gladly ... plus, I'm not very good at answering questions that require me to choose one thing with one thing only ... and Facebook.

    What career would you have liked to pursue if you hadn't become a lawyer?

    In grade 2, I wanted to be an architect. At the end of high school I started engineering, intending to be an aeronautical engineer.

    What is your proudest achievement?

    Since you are in effect inviting me to brag, my first case as a barrister, Ruhani v Director of Police, where I spoke in the High Court five days after signing the bar roll.

    Participating in the Malaysian solution case in the High Court - Plaintiff M70 v Commonwealth and in the right to vote case, Rowe v Electoral Commissioner

    What is your greatest regret?

    Not being fluent in multiple languages.

    What did you learn about the media as a result of working on the Finkelstein inquiry?

    No comment.

    Tell us what it was like working on the Finkelstein inquiry? 

    A lot of fun. The Fink was great to work with and the combination of academic and practical work suited me well. 

    What do you never leave home without?

    My iPhone.

    What is your luckiest item of apparel?

    The socks of justice - socks with small scales on them, purchased as a gift from the US Supreme Court shop. 

    If you were a foodstuff, what would you be?

    Salmon sashimi.

    What human qualities do you most distrust?


    What qualities do you look for in a pet?

    Intelligence and a non-shedding coat - both of which are present in the family poodle, Percy.

    What would you change about Australia?

    Our refugee policy.

    How would you like to die?

    In my sleep.

    What would your epitaph say? 

    I hope it will be appropriate for it to say, "She made a difference".

    What comes into your mind when you shut your eyes and think of the word "law"? 

    A statue of Lady Justice, with her blindfold slightly askew and the scales slightly out of balance.

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