Protest for cult per­son­al­ity

PEO­PLE GATHER TO SUP­PORT SYD­NEY SAND­WICH BOARD AC­TIVIST LIM AF­TER SEE­ING FOOTAGE OF HIS AR­REST

Shepparton News - - NATIONAL NEWS -

More than 150 peo­ple have sur­rounded a Syd­ney po­lice sta­tion to protest against the treat­ment of sand­wich board ac­tivist Danny Lim af­ter footage of him be­ing ar­rested sent social me­dia into a frenzy.

The cult Syd­ney per­son­al­ity is con­sid­er­ing le­gal ac­tion against po­lice.

The for­mer lo­cal coun­cil­lor was fined on Fri­day af­ter three po­lice of­fi­cers ar­rested him at Ex­change Place in Baranga­roo about 9.20 am.

It is un­clear what the of­fen­sive be­hav­iour in­volved or who made the com­plaint though one woman, on Face­book, ad­mit­ted she called the po­lice be­cause Mr Lim was ‘‘in the way’’ and ‘‘dis­turb­ing’’.

Video of the ar­rest shows an of­fi­cer hold­ing a sand­wich board sign that reads: ‘‘SMILE CVN’T! WHY CVN’T?’’.

Social me­dia was quickly flooded with calls for a protest against the po­lice af­ter Mr Lim re­leased im­ages of his bruised wrists fol­low­ing Fri­day’s ar­rest.

Mr Lim told social me­dia he had been left dis­tressed af­ter his com­pan­ion dog, Smarty, was also caught up in the ar­rest.

Crowds con­verged on the CBD’s po­lice sta­tion af­ter noon yes­ter­day.

Many car­ried signs with in­verted A sym­bols in­clud­ing ‘‘STOP COR­RUPT GOV­ERN­MENT CVNTS’’.

Mr Lim, wear­ing a large sign call­ing on politi­cians to act on chem­i­cal con­tam­i­na­tions, thanked the crowd and those who had recorded his ar­rest on Right be­hind him: their phones.

‘‘I couldn’t thank them enough,’’ he said.

‘‘I asked for help, help, I told them I had to pick up my dog Smarty.’’

Mr Lim said he had PTSD, but urged peo­ple to ‘‘have a heart’’ and fight in­jus­tice for their chil­dren and grand­chil­dren.

‘‘The big­gest in­jury which ev­ery­one must be able to take is when they try to break you, your mind, your heart, don’t let them do it,’’ he said.

His lawyer, Bryan Wrench, told the crowd the pair would not tol­er­ate ‘‘po­lit­i­cal cen­sor­ship’’.

‘‘The only thing of­fen­sive was how they treated Danny on that day, and Smarty,’’ he said.

‘‘We are not go­ing to let this go. We are go­ing to fight all the way.’’

Mr Wrench rep­re­sented Mr Lim in 2017 when a District Court judge over­turned a con­vic­tion and fine af­ter find­ing a sim­i­lar sign worn in 2015 mock­ing then-prime min­is­ter Tony Ab­bott was un­likely to of­fend the av­er­age Aus­tralian.

Us­ing an in­verted A in the word ‘‘can’t’’, those signs said ‘‘TONY YOU CAN’T. LIAR, HEART­LESS, CRUEL’’ and ‘‘TONY YOU CAN’T SCREW ED­U­CA­TION’’.

Mr Wrench said would re­peat his­tory.

‘‘We did it be­fore and we are go­ing to do it again,’’ he said.

‘‘And this time they’re go­ing to pay. We’ll see you when we go to court. And they can’t stop us — C V N T.’’

A GoFundMe has been started up to raise $500 for Mr Lim’s court costs fol­low­ing his ar­rest.

By yes­ter­day af­ter­noon it had al­most tripled its goal and raised $1300. they

Pic­ture: AAP Im­age/Danny Casey

Syd­ney sand­wich board ac­tivist Danny Lim hold­ing his dog Smarty.

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