Eamonn Duff, Allen & Unwin, And Fairfax Media

Another disturbing feature of the Schapelle Corby case has been the number of individuals and corporations seeking to derive revenue from her grave situation. Few have been more prominent than Eamonn Duff and book publisher, Allen & Unwin.

[NEW: The documentary film, Dead Men Can't Sue, presents a graphic representation of the material published on this web page, including further revelations from additional sources]


Duff's original role, as a journalist with Fairfax Media, is documented by the following extracts from the Primary Smear Report

It is also worthy of note that the Queensland Police Service have recorded a formal statutory declaration, stating that there is no direct evidence, or even indirect evidence, to link Schapelle Corby with drugs.

Subsequently, they also confirmed again that, despite Duff's activities, there remained no evidence to link Mr Corby with the drug trade:

The false nature of McCauley's paid-for fabrications was further exposed by Private Investigator, Col Chapman, who had been employed intensively, and long term, on the Schapelle Corby case, for Australian television networks:

However, despite his story having been exposed as bogus, Duff continued to exploit his contact with McCauley, building upon further fabrications. He began a liaison with John Stewart, of the ABC, who also had a lengthy track record, for example, via the ABC's Lateline production:

Stewart's own role is also further documented in the Primary Smear Report. With this background, it was, perhaps, no surprise when their names appeared together, with a book cover image, on Allen & Unwin's website:

At this stage, Stewart appears to have withdrawn from this initiative. Duff, however, continued the venture unabated. The net result was a collection of smears and fabrications which Allen & Unwin promoted with a title of 'The Fall Girl':

However, Allen & Unwin appear to have forgotten that living persons can sue for defamation, when smears and lies are printed about them.

Their pre-publish material contained such references as "a look at the Corby family, their drug running business". Whilst 'dead men can't sue', innocent living parties, can sue. When approached about the forthcoming publication, by representatives of Schapelle Corby's family, Allen & Unwin retracted and issued a formal apology:

The book was rapidly withdrawn.

Unfortunately, it appears that this was only a tactical move, to enable re-work, and focus upon the party unable to sue: Michael Corby deceased.

Allen & Unwin announced a new book late in 2011, sporting a brand new title.

Duff had simply replayed all the old smears, despite them having already been debunked. Allen & Unwin had published them as a book, despite prior notification of the nature of the material. They backed the fabrications unequivocally:

It would also appear that Mr Corby wasn't the only deceased person that Australian law allowed Duff to besmirch with impunity:

Duff even included fabrications which had been exposed in the Supreme Court (see the Primary Sources Report). He used the wholly discredited account of an individual called Kim Moore, to deliver an entire series of false allegations.

The nature of Moore was further exposed by a direct witnesses, Jade:

Duff ruthlessly used Kim Moore's fabrications to paint a picture which also smeared Mr Corby's neighbour, Tony Lewis. This was despite the clarity of the relevant court transcripts, and the clear factual inaccuracies in her story. Mr Lewis also confirmed that he had never spoken to Duff, and unequivocally dismissed the account as "fantasy".

[Streamed From The Truth Network, Netherlands]

Duff's creative license also appears to have extended to smaller players in the fabrication. One example is that of former AFP Officer, Roger Rathjen, who is entwined directly with McCauley. For example:

A volunteer for The Expendable Project traced Mr Rathjen, who was very clear about what Duff had produced, stating that "It's a load of bullshit". He categorically denied any such interactions with McCauley.

He further stated that he hadn't even been interviewed by Duff.

The Expendable Project's researchers have received similar responses from almost everyone contacted. For example, Andrew O'Shea is portrayed by Duff in the following terms:

The impression created by this unexplained quote is that Duff actually interviewed Mr O'Shea, first hand. However, Mr O'Shea categorically denied that he had ever spoken to Duff. Indeed, he had never heard of him.

This ambiguity technique is a common feature of the book. Another example occurs with respect to Detective Sergeant Mark Andrews:

When contacted by an Expendable Project researcher, Mr Andrews also confirmed that he had made no such statement to Duff.

Noel Vinall features within the very first chapter. He is presented as a long term friend of Mr Corby:

Duff uses all his usual tricks, placing Mr Corby in the context of drugs from the outset. In this case, he presents a picture of marijuana smoking, and the growing of "dope plants", in Mr Vinall's garage.

As with so many of the others, however, the core character totally refutes the suggestion. When asked about this, he states categorically "That's bullshit".

But, for the purposes of the rest of the book, the scene was set.

The old debunked fabrications of Malcolm McCauley were supplemented by equally false allegations regarding the involvement of Adelaide man, David McHugh.

However, as a living person, Mr McHugh himself came forward in February 2012. His comments with respect to both Duff, and his output, could hardly have been clearer:

[Streamed From The Truth Network, Netherlands]

David McHugh subsequently gave an entire series of interviews, some of which were extremely distressing. He died, following a violent assault, on 25th April 2013. The previous day he had recorded two additional, extremely revealing, interviews, and explained that he had issued a series of ultimatums to a number of parties. For further information, view The Chronology Of David McHugh (Deceased).

The attitude of both Duff, and his publishers, was perhaps exemplified in April 2013, when damages were awarded for the use of family photographs without any consent or agreement at all.

Federal court judge, the Hon Robert John Buchanan, was scathing, and stated directly what had transpired: "I am satisfied that the respondent acted in flagrant disregard of the rights of the applicants as owners of copyright. To the extent that the respondent did so through Mr Duff, I am satisfied that Mr Duff had no foundation for any belief that he or the respondent had a right to reproduce any of the photographs, or that he actually held any such belief. To the extent that the respondent through Ms Kaiser made decisions to reproduce the photographs, I am satisfied that she also held no genuine belief that the respondent had permission to reproduce them. I infer that the respondent took a calculated risk".

With respect to Allen & Unwin's editorial director, he stated: "Ms Kaiser declared in her evidence, "I respect copyright", but it is clear that if the present case is an example, the declaration was a hollow one. The laws of copyright do not exist only to protect those of whom a publisher may approve. The authorities suggest that in a case of flagrant infringement a court should mark its disapproval of the conduct."

In awarding damages, he ordered that all remaining copies of the book should be destroyed.

During the copyright case, Duff also admitted, under cross-examination, that he had made a payment, from his own pocket, to the wife of the main source of the fabrications. He described this as 'assistance', painting a picture of himself as a philanthropist:

As this case was focused specifically upon copyright breach, rather than defamation, the judge curtailed questions on any further payments, or indeed, on the precise sum involved.


Whilst the book had been pulped as a result of the copyright judgement, the defamation case finally reached the Supreme Court in August 2014. The outcome was stark: for a multitude of fabrications published within it, costs and substantial damages were awarded to the plaintiffs, Michael and Mercedes Corby.

However, having provided a media-wide platform for Duff to promote his fictitious work, and reported the false story endlessly for years, the Australian media barely referred to the case at all. Despite its profile, and significance as a legal case, it was, in practical terms, buried.

A search on Google News a week after the judgement, on Eamonn Duff's name,
returned just one small report from an Australian news source

In 2015 the nature of Duff's fiction was again exposed via a defamation action taken by Schapelle Corby's mother. This was by Ten Network reported as follows:

Further information:
The Eamonn Duff And Allen & Unwin Defamation Case

How much revenue Duff derived from his hugely damaging and defamatory fiction is unknown, although it is certainly substantial. The hurt and distress inflicted upon Schapelle Corby, her family, and a significant number of other innocent individuals, is incalculable.

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NOTE: Images courtesy from The Truth Network, NL