Australia: Australian Federal Police raid News Corp journalist Annika Smethurst's home over alleged national security leak - PressFrom - Australia
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AustraliaAustralian Federal Police raid News Corp journalist Annika Smethurst's home over alleged national security leak

09:15  04 june  2019
09:15  04 june  2019 Source:   abc.net.au

Journalist's home raided over spying story

Journalist's home raided over spying story Officers from the Australian Federal Police have raided the home of a journalist over a story on proposed new powers for Australia's digital spy agency.

Australian federal police officers are raiding the home of News Corp Australia journalist Annika Smethurst over an April, 2018 story accusing The raid comes three weeks after the federal election returned the Morrison government to power, leaving Home Affairs minister Peter Dutton at the helm.

Raids on premises, including senator Stephen Conroy’ s office and a Labor staffer’ s home , are understood to be in relation to alleged leaking of National Broadband Network documents.

Australian Federal Police raid News Corp journalist Annika Smethurst's home over alleged national security leak© ABC News Annika Smethurst reported earlier this year that government agencies were considering spying on Australians.

Police have raided the Canberra home of a News Corp journalist after she reported that the Federal Government was considering spying on Australians.

According to the Daily Telegraph, the raid related to a story published in April last year in which Annika Smethurst reported that the Home Affairs and Defence departments were considering giving spy agencies greater surveillance powers.

"This raid demonstrates a dangerous act of intimidation towards those committed to telling uncomfortable truths," a News Corp spokesperson said.

Scott Morrison defends Federal Police raid on journalist Annika Smethurst's Canberra home

Scott Morrison defends Federal Police raid on journalist Annika Smethurst's Canberra home The Prime Minister says Federal Police followed the law when they raided the News Corp journalist's Canberra home yesterday, more than a year after she reported on government considerations to spy on Australians.

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) is the national and principal federal law enforcement agency of the Australian Government with the unique role of investigating crime and to protect the national

Federal police raid Parliament House over alleged NBN leak . Why not finance and banking? That most nebulous idea of national security could be twisted to suit Labor’ s battle against the federal police raids should be seen as a threat to every journalist and news organisation in the country.

"The raid was outrageous and heavy-handed."

The Australian Federal Police (AFP) confirmed the raid took place earlier today amid an investigation into leaked information.

"The matter relates to an investigation into the alleged unauthorised disclosure of national security information that was referred to the AFP," the AFP said in a statement.

"Police will allege the unauthorised disclosure of these specific documents undermines Australia's national security.

"No arrests are expected today as a result of this activity."

ASD collects and assesses foreign intelligence information before passing it on to Australia's domestic and foreign spy agencies.

The ASD does not collect information on Australian citizens, but some senior public servants want to change that.

Australian Federal Police raid ABC headquarters at Sydney's Ultimo

Australian Federal Police raid ABC headquarters at Sydney's Ultimo The raid on the Ultimo headquarters of the ABC comes a day after AFP officers searched the home of a News Corp journalist.

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Labor shadow minister for communications Stephen Conroy says Australian federal police raid is ‘an extraordinary attack on the parliament’.

The story alleged new powers, if adopted, would go to the Australian Signals Directorate (ASD) to secretly access bank records, emails and text messages without leaving a trace.

Smethurst's article included images of letters between the two departments as they discussed the proposals.

Raid happens a year after referral

The Defence Department referred the leak to the AFP on April 29, 2018, the same day News Corp published the story.

Then foreign affairs minister Julie Bishop at the time said she would not support the proposal if it had been brought to cabinet.

The ABC has contacted Smethurst for comment.

"What's gone on this morning sends clear and dangerous signals to journalists and newsrooms across Australia," the News Corp spokesperson said.

Turnbull opposed domestic spying: report

Turnbull opposed domestic spying: report Malcolm Turnbull reportedly told colleagues he would not back the idea of allowing the electronic spy agency to monitor Australians. Mr Turnbull reportedly did not know about the alleged proposal and sought an explanation from the ASD director-general after the story. AFP officers searched the Canberra home of Ms Smethurst on Tuesday over her 2018 story. Officers also carried out a raid on the ABC's Sydney offices on Wednesday in relation to ABC news reports in 2017 that revealed Australian defence personnel may have committed war crimes in Afghanistan.

Australian federal police . The AFP is the national law enforcement agency of Australia . Federal police raid did not respect parliamentary privilege rules, au pair inquiry finds. Prime minister asked by Labor if or his office played any role in the leaking of a confidential AFP report on encryption laws.

Election 2016: Federal police operation condemned by Bill Shorten as ‘unprecedented’ during a federal Australian Fed Police confirm it received a referral from NBN in Dec 2015 re leak - more Fairfax Media is reporting the raids are over a leak to the news outlet that costs were blowing out in

"This will chill public-interest reporting."

Federal Parliamentary Press Gallery president David Crowe, from the Sydney Morning Herald and Age, was among the high-profile journalists to raise their concerns about the raid on Smethurst's home.

Kerry O'Brien says AFP raids on the ABC and Annika Smethurst 'go to the heart of democracy'

Kerry O'Brien says AFP raids on the ABC and Annika Smethurst 'go to the heart of democracy' Former journalist Kerry O'Brien says Australians "have to be really clear about what's at stake here" after this week's AFP raids on the ABC and a News Corp journalist, which have prompted an outpouring of support from international media outlets such as the BBC and the New York Times.

Federal police have raided the Department of Home Affairs office in Canberra, as officers investigate a leak related to the au pair saga. Internal emails leaked to the media showed minister Peter Dutton' s office demanded an au pair detained at Brisbane airport be given urgent consideration for a visa

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"This is a huge concern when [Annika Smethurst's] story was clearly in the public interest," he said on Twitter.

"Original story included images of letters outlining a plan to allow government hackers to 'proactively disrupt and covertly remove' cyber threats."

The Media Entertainment and Arts Alliance, the union that represents journalists, described the raid as an "outrageous attack on press freedom".

"It is an outrage that more than a year after the story was reported in April, 2018, but just days after the federal election result, the Federal Police are now raiding a journalist's home in order to seize documents, computers and a mobile phone in order to track down the source," MEAA media president Marcus Strom said.

Texts to politicians excluded from raids on journalist’s home.
Australian Federal Police excluded politicians from their hunt for information, during Tuesday's raid on a journalist's home. Text messages between News Corp journalist Annika Smethurst and Labor's Richard Marles and Murray Watt were identified and then removed from the body of evidence. News Corp alleges a senior officer told a junior colleague; “we don’t want politicians”. Smethurst’s home was searched over a 2018 story detailing a government proposal to spy on Australians.

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