The Downing Centre courts in Sydney. (Photo: J Bar / Wikimedia)

High flying lawyers’ personal fight heading for court

Lawyer Zali Burrows is to sue fellow legal eagle Adam Houda in the NSW District Court for defamation.

The action is being brought over a series of retweets Mr Houda made on his Twitter account in relation to an article published by the Sydney Morning Herald which Ms Burrows is currently pursuing the paper over in the Federal Court of Australia.

Ms Burrows, who used to represent former Auburn Council Deputy Mayor Salim Mehajer and Australian Islamic State supporter Abu Bakr sent Mr Houda a concerns notice after he retweeted the article.

She claims Mr Houda, the principal lawyer at Lawyers Corp, retweeted the article a second time after receiving the concerns notice.

“I just had enough, that’s why I commenced proceedings,” Ms Burrows told Hatch.

“You are responsible for comments published on your social media account.”

Mr Houda, the go-to lawyer for people charged with terror offences, including Sydney siege gunman Man Monis has appointed Channel Nine’s former defamation specialist Mark O’Brien.

O’Brien, who has worked for James Packer in the past told Hatch the claim is baseless.

“The claim is completely misconceived as defamation action because Adam Houda tweeted a Sydney Morning Herald court report of proceedings against Zali Burrows and that is a complete defence under the Defamation Act,” Mr O’Brien told Hatch this evening. 

“She has sued on retweets for which Adam Houda is not legally responsible. We have put her on notice that the claim is liable to be struck out. We have had no response.”

The matter is listed for a directions hearing on August 20.