Teresa Van Lieshout

In Van Lieshout v Mead Centre Armadale Mental Health Service [2011] WADC 104, the plaintiff, David Van Lieshout, was being represented by Teresa van Lieshout, who purported in the writ to act under an enduring power of attorney and guardianship. Pursuant to O 70 r 2(3) of the Rules of Supreme Court 1971 (WA), a next friend must act by way of a solicitor, to which Teresa van Lieshout responded that O 70 r 2(3) is beyond the power of the judges of the Supreme Court to make and is invalid on the basis is that it is inconsistent with other legislation giving powers to a guardian, and with the human rights of Mr van Lieshout guaranteed by statute, in particular as a person under a disability. The court concluded that it must give effect to the Rules of the Supreme Court, that there is no basis for a finding of invalidity, and that the plaintiff’s action will be stayed until such time as the appointed next friend has entered an appearance by a solicitor.

In Van Lieshout v Public Advocate WA [2013] WADC 92 the plaintiff Teresa van Lieshout filed an originating summons along with a document described as ‘Application to cancel VRO Order, Application to transfer case PE677/12 to District Court, WA’ seeking a claim for damages and defamation, that arose out of an application for the making of a violence restraining order against her on behalf of her brother David van Lieshout, by the Public Advocate WA who was David van Lieshout’s guardian. The Public Advocate filed a chambers summons to strike out the plaintiffs summons on the grounds that it discloses no reasonable cause of action and is scandalous, frivolous or vexatious. The plaintiff’s claim was dismissed.

Teresa van Lieshout was convicted of carrying out a development on land without approval contrary to s 218 of the Planning and Development Act 2005 (WA), namely the placing of political advertising signs on the front fence of a property owned by the appellant, which is effectively limited by a local planning policy. She was convicted and fined, and subsequently applied for a hearing to appeal, seeking a stay on the Magistrates Court decision in Van Lieshout v City of Fremantle [2012] WASC 361 on the grounds the magistrate was wrong to impose those amounts, that the fine and costs are an infringement of her civil and political rights, and they acted without or in excess of jurisdiction. The court found that the grounds were difficult to understand, a confusing collection of assertions, and that the only course was to list the matter for a hearing to determine whether leave to appeal should be granted. Therefore it granted her an opportunity to establish that her grounds have a reasonable prospect of succeeding, provided that she files the necessary papers.

She sought leave to appeal against the conviction in Van Lieshout v City of Fremantle (No 2) [2013] WASC 176. The arguments included that the City was not lawfully constituted, that the laws under which the appellant was prosecuted were invalid as being inconsistent with Commonwealth laws, in particular the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act 1986 (Cth), that those laws were also invalid because they contravened the appellant’s right to freedom of political communication, that the respondent was not a legal entity because there was no provision for local government in the Constitution, making reference to referenda in which proposals to include reference to local government in the Constitution have failed, and that because she is the owner of the property concerned she is not liable to planning laws made by the City. The court noted that:

“Her submissions consisted largely of political rhetoric and were short on legal substance. She sought to support her arguments by extensive references to the Bible. She confidently expressed her own views of the law and scorned all contrary views. She was immoderate both in tone and content. She made wild, unsubstantiated and scandalous allegations of dishonesty and corruption. She attempted to bully the court by threatening to publish her allegations on the internet.”

The court concluded that leave in respect of grounds 5 and 7 was granted but that those grounds cannot succeed. Leave in respect of all other grounds were refused because they have no reasonable prospects of success.

The respondent applied for an order that the appellant pay the respondent’s costs to be taxed. As the appellant was not in attendance the question of costs was reserved pending the appellants written submissions on that question, to be filed within three days.

“The appellant was sent a copy of the judgment and informed of the orders on 10 May 2013. Over the following five hours she sent 20 emails to my Associate. It is unnecessary to detail the contents of the emails other than to say that they contained the appellant’s views of the judgment and a tirade of personal abuse expressed in the foulest possible language. The only references to the question of costs were a number of statements, expressed in vehement terms, that the appellant did not intend to pay any costs awarded against her.”

In Van Lieshout v City of Fremantle (No 2) [2013] WASC 176 (S) the court ordered that the appellant pay the respondent’s costs fixed in the sum of $4,000.

The appellant was charged with one count of criminal damage and one count of stealing relating to the removal of a wheel clamp placed on the appellant’s vehicle pursuant to an enforcement warrant. The appellant failed to appear for the hearing and the magistrate subsequently ordered that a bench warrant be issued to bring the appellant before the court. She was arrested and was charged with having breached her bail undertaking, and appeared in the Magistrates Court in relation to the two original charges and the additional charge of breaching bail, to which she entered pleas of not guilty to each charge. The magistrate adjourned for trial, and the appellant entered into a bail undertaking to appear on that date. The appellant again failed to attend the trial, and the magistrate again issued a warrant for her arrest.

In Van Lieshout v Kelly [2014] WASC 432 the appellant had written to the court and advised that she would not be attending on the basis that she had initiated an appeal, asserting an “unlawful warrant issued for my arrest” and unlawful arrest and deprivation of liberty”. Further, she sought “Interim Orders for a Stay of Executive Order To Set Aside (Cancel) Fremantle Magistrates Court, magistrate Malley decision warrant for my arrest made in my absence, as a gross act of injustice, and malicious action”. The applicant alleges the “magistrate erred in law and fact, action in excess of jurisdiction, abuse of process, and miscarriage of justice.” The grounds set out in 17 paragraphs a multitude of claims and allegations which include references to the Fines, Penalties and Infringement Notices Enforcement Act 1994 (WA) which the appellant says is a very violent and destructive law created by corrupt politicians and violently enforced by Magistrates Courts, Sheriff’s Office and police resulting in extortion and stealing from the public, cruelly and unjustly resulting in deprivation of liberty and death which must be challenged as it has resulted in massive human rights abuses in Western Australia. The application for leave to appeal was dismissed as incompetent as it did not disclose any appealable decision.

Van Lieshout v Kelly [2015] WASC 455 was an appeal against the decisions relating to charges that the appellant wilfully and unlawfully damaged a wheel clamp, stole the wheel clamp, and on two occasions breached a bail undertaking by failing to appear. The court noted the appellant appeared before the Magistrates Court at Fremantle, and applied for an adjournment of her trial, but it was rejected, and that during the course of the trial the appellant said that she was refusing to return to court for the next hearing because she was unhappy with the way proceedings had been conducted.  When the appellant’s trial resumed she did not appear, and another arrest warrant issued. The applications for leave to appeal were dismissed.

ABC: “Warrant issued for Canning by-election candidate Teresa Van Lieshout“:

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In Bottrill v Van Lieshout and Ors (Civil Dispute) [2015] ACAT 26 the respondent was the subject of a defamation case, in which the plaintiff David Bottrill was defamed on Facebook and a number of other websites. It appears to center around a YouTube video in which Teresa Van Lieshout referred to Mr Bottrill as a life member of an organisation known as the Ordo Templi Orientis, which was alleged to be a paedophile group which kills and tortures victims, and that he uses his employment to facilitate the entry into Australia of minors for paedophilia by Muslim men. (See Bottrill v Bailey (Civil Dispute) [2018] ACAT 45 at [58]–[66].) The defamatory nature of the material was confirmed by the Appeal Tribunal. (See Bailey v Bottrill [2018] ACAT 120 at [16].) Leave to appeal that finding was refused. (See Bailey v Bottrill (No 2) [2019] ACTSC 167; 14 ACTLR 108 at [8].) However the court found that the Van Leishout video did not provide unadorned defamatory imputations. It made clear that the imputations were the subject of defamation proceedings, and so informed any viewer of the applicants opinion that the claims made were untrue and defamatory.  (See [2018] ACAT 120 at [85].) The case itself was regarding Mr Borusiewicz’s Facebook page “Luke’s Army” in which all four respondents were administrators, but the Tribunal dismissed the claims against Ms Van Leishout, Ms Pryor and Ms Butler because, in substance, it was satisfied that none of those women had had any material responsibility for what was written on the website or on Mr Borusiewicz’s Facebook page. The Tribunal awarded damages of $10,130 against Mr Borusiewicz because he was responsible for what had been published on the website and on his Facebook page and because of his “contumelious disregard for the truth and the hurt that the applicant must have suffered”. (See also Ordo Templi Orientis v Legg (Anti Discrimination) [2007] VCAT 1484)

Daily Mail: “Independent candidate is filmed unleashing shocking rant“:

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Mandurah Mail: “Teresa van Lieshout – criminal charges, abusive rants don’t disqualify Canning candidate“:

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Teresa Van Lieshout had increasingly embraced fringe and extreme ideas, and in recent years she’s used YouTube and Telegram to share speeches of herself announcing arrest warrants for Australian politicians, signed off by herself as the self-appointed “true” governor-general of Australia. 

In June and July 2021, a group calling themselves “Equity of the People’s Nation” made a callout for “true patriots” who were “concerned about the Status Quo” (sic) to join a Zoom call with “Commissioner Shane Murphy” and “Commissioner Jamie Mcbain” to discuss taking over the federal government, including the creation of this “alternate” Australian Federal Police to execute the “arrest warrants” Teresa Van Lieshout had announced. “Very important if you can get on this private call…. High level intel,” it said. “Time to take our country back.” 

This resulted meeting in a viral video with a still of AFP Commissioner Reece Kershaw, falsely depicting him as detailing anti-government sentiment and encouraging others to join, promising a police coup of the Australian government.

The following audio recording was published on Brighteon account “Truth or Consequences” in late July 2021 as “LEAKED AUDIO FROM A POLICE BRIEFING IN AUSTRALIA – PREPARATIONS TO TAKE DOWN THE GOVERNMENT LEADERS” with the video caption “Federal Police Commissioner Reece Kershaw literally spelling out the crimes of how our ‘leaders’ have hijacked our government & how they will be taken down under common law and the constitution”:

On 2 August 2021, Australian Federal Police Assistant Commissioner Counter Terrorism, Scott Lee, announced a police operation run by teams from Queensland, South Australia and Western Australia had targeted a group of anti-government Australians. A Perth man, 49y/o Marcus Jensen, was charged with impersonating a commonwealth public official, and following an investigation led by the Queensland Joint Counter Terrorism Team, investigators were made aware of a shipment of three boxes of fake AFP badges, which were consigned to a house in Cairns where a member of the group lived, and were found dumped in a local creek. A total of 470 badges were recovered by Queensland Police before search warrants were executed. Assistant Commissioner Scott Lee stated:

“We have found no evidence this group has the ability – or has actually attempted – to carry out specific violent acts in support of statements made by members of this group. The Queensland JCTT acted early in this instance to stop any potential disturbing activities at the earliest possible stage, and we will not hesitate to lay further charges if more criminal offences are identified. The general public needs to know that a video purporting to be of the AFP commissioner calling for people to join in a plan to create a new government is complete and utter nonsense – it is not from the commissioner, it is not from the AFP and has absolutely no credibility. We continue to investigate those we believe are responsible for creating it.”

AFP: “Man charged with impersonating Commonwealth official as search warrants executed in three states“:

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Marcus Jensen faced Perth Magistrates Court on 16 August 2021,  but was not represented by a lawyer. He was yet to enter a plea, and returned on 5 November 2021 where he entered a plea of not guilty


A search warrant was also executed at Teresa van Lieshout’s Peterborough residence on 2 August 2021, but she was in hiding. On 10 September 2021, she was also arrested. AFP: “Woman charged with impersonating Commonwealth official as part of ongoing investigation“:

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ABC: “Peterborough woman Teresa Van Lieshout arrested over fake police badges“:

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Advertiser: “Former political candidate Teresa van Lieshout refused bail over alleged bid to start rival police force and overthrow government“:

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Teresa van Lieshout was refused bail initially, and after being in remand for six months, on 11 March 2022 she was granted bail with electronically-monitored home detention and strict conditions. Part of her bail conditions are not to use the internet and social media, weekly mental health treatments, and that she is not to contact Marcus Jensen, or the  other three people were allegedly referred to as “police commissioners”–  Shane Murphy, Jamie McBain, and Sifu Uakusoljit. AdelaideNow: “Far-right candidate claims mental health defence, but no illness, in ‘uprising’ case“:

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Teresa van Lieshout returned to court on the 29 April, where her counsel insisted that she was mentally incompetent, and sought a further inquiry as to whether or not she has a mental incompetence defence available. Bail was continued until her next hearing in August. The Advertiser: “Teresa Angela van Lieshout, accused of overthrow plot, back in court“:

Crikey: “‘True patriots’ sharing conspiracies sparked police raids across three states“:

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