60 Minutes crew, Brisbane mother facing kidnapping charges in Lebanon ‘should grovel’, experts say

 

Clockwise from top left: Tara Brown, Ben Williamson, Stephen Rice and David Ballment.Clockwise from top left: Tara Brown, Ben Williamson, Stephen Rice and David Ballment.

 

The Australian film crew facing a potentially lengthy prison sentence in Lebanon should “grovel” before a Beirut court, experts say.

They say that and an unreserved apology will offer them the best chance of walking away from a situation that has gone from bad to worse.

Brisbane mother Sally Faulkner is expected later today to front the Babda Palace of Justice in Mt Lebanon alongside 60 Minutes reporter Tara Brown, senior producer Stephen Rice, cameraman Ben Williamson and sound recordist David Ballment.

The Australian film crew facing a potentially lengthy prison sentence in Lebanon should “grovel” before a Beirut court, experts say.

They say that and an unreserved apology will offer them the best chance of walking away from a situation that has gone from bad to worse.

Brisbane mother Sally Faulkner is expected later today to front the Babda Palace of Justice in Mt Lebanon alongside 60 Minutes reporter Tara Brown, senior producer Stephen Rice, cameraman Ben Williamson and sound recordist David Ballment.

The five are among nine people to have been charged over a botched attempt to recover Ms Faulkner’s two children from their father in the southern Beirut suburb of Hadath.

Donald Rothwell, professor of International Law at the Australian National University, said acknowledging wrongdoing was a must.

“What I’d say is that a distinction is likely to be made between Sally Faulkner and the other parties involved, including the child recovery team,” he told news.com.au.

“There’s some prospect that Sally might have her charges downgraded to a misdemeanour but the people from 60 Minutes and the child recovery service at face value seem to have been engaged in a commercial operation to abduct children and there appears to have been some act of violence involved.

“The Lebanese authorities would take a dim view of foreigners seeking to take Lebanese nationals in the way that apparently has occurred. Any effort to acknowledge they were in the wrong would be beneficial.”

-more at NZherald

 

 

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