A book called The Evidence was published on 28 December 1995 in
South Australia by Henry Sheppard.
The book told the story of the AOG Insurance Agency Scandal:
— the sackings, the withholding of wages due, the seizing of Greg Sowerby’s Independent Churches Insurance Program, the threats, intimidation, the false accusations by the AOG National Executive to the South Australian police, the police raid on the Sowerby’s home, the seizing of a filing cabinet full of papers, the repeated police interrogations over a twelve month period (the police finally deciding that there were no charges to answer and returning the documents), the constant slander by AOG Executive members, the attempted theft of Greg’s Fuelcard business, the the systematic white-anting of that business, and so on.
The Evidence was about 120 pages long and told of years of torment. It contains a definitive description of the spiritual abuse of two families on a sustained basis.
The book consists of numerous documents — most of them written by various AOG National Executive leaders and staff, as well as copies of the relevant police reports (obtained under the provisions of the Freedom of Information Act), documents that Andrew Evans and his fellow AOG National Executive leaders became increasingly desperate to cover up.
On 9 February 1996, Andrew Evans and six of the other AOG National Executive members commenced legal action against Henry Sheppard in the South Australian District Court seeking “aggravated and exemplary damages” on account of The Evidence.
After an initial attempt to defend the action on my own — and I am not a lawyer — I was forced to acknowledge that I lacked the technical expertise required and I simply quit the fight.
A series of uncontested court hearings followed. Then, on 18 November 1996, just when the date for the final declaration of the outcome was to be set by the judge, Andrew Evans and his mates chickened out. They “discontinued” their action.
Having thrown the best part of $100,000 of the people’s money down the toilet, the prospect of being awarded $1 each by the judge (on a minor legal technicality), and becoming a national laughing-stock into the bargain, was more than these heroic, professional, religious leaders could face.
The other aspect to Andrew Evans’ legal action was the demand that The Evidence be banned as “defamatory”.
On 28 August 1996, on the basis that I had “failed to file and serve an amended defence”, the judge ruled that: “the defendants [my business name Aitch Gee Publications was also named as a defendant] be permanently restrained… from publishing or distributing further copies of the matter complained of namely the book entitled The Evidence”.
The injunction concluded with a cheery note telling me that:
What does that mean?
You can purchase a copy by sending $25 to the address shown below
(includes postage, packing & insurance to anywhere in Australia).
Last update: 29 September 1997|
Copyright (c) Henry G. Sheppard 1997