Keep Archie Writing - and Free

$3,905 of $10,000 goal

Raised by 50 people in 2 months
I am a journalist who writes the stories about the three codes of racing that others don't, and I publish them free both for readers enjoyment, and so that I might do my little bit to  enlighten the people about some of the more controversial aspects of the administration and running of our sports.

Unfortunately this tends to make me unpopular with some powerful people in racing, and a trend seems to have emerged whereby those with vested personal interests who want to shut me up run off to the police and have me charged with all manner of outrageous offenses that I didn't commit. All of them of course are directly related to stories that I have written. Funny that.

The latest arrest was on Tuesday the 26 of June when I was rudely awoken by 4 gun-toting police officers who had rattled my sick dad's door waving a warrant in his face demanding entry to the Polo Club. Once inside they  seized all my phones, computers, hard drives, iPads, documents and files, then arrested me on 5 counts of piffle and nonsense and dragged me off to jail,  where I spent a most unpleasant 30 hours perched on a cold steel bench before I was - thanks to a great lawyer (cheers Jim) - fortunate enough to be granted bail on these charges alleging serious crimes that I've never committed.

In fact I'd never committed any sort of crime in nearly 50 years before being pinched during the raid with a bit of pot in my drawer for medicinal uses that are stupidly still illegal despite being legalised (go figure). And so sick people suffer and honest punters like me are turned into criminals. Great isn't it?

That's sad, but what's sadder for my many thousands of readers right now is that my bail conditions mean that I'd had to shut down your favorite website jeebung.com, and can't open it up again until I knock off these five new ridiculous freedom of speech squashing charges designed to shut me up and shut jeebung.com down (and trust me, no matter what spin you might hear these charges aren't fair dinkum at All, but are purely designed to put the fear of God into me, send me broke and shut me up. Luckily for me I don't believe in God and I'm already broke, so now we're down to just the shutting up. My teachers have been trying since I was 6 years old, so good luck).

The problem is that it costs money to defend charges no matter how little merit they may have - which of course is the idea here - and because I write and publish for free I don't have any dough.  Lawyers don't work for nothing unfortunately so unless I can raise some funds for this fresh set of 'Shut Archie Butterfly Down' charges, then shut down I shall be, and without legal representation if I have a bit of bad luck maybe an outside chance of being locked up too.

Many kindly donated to the lawyers retirement fund last time I got hauled away in January, and their generosity was and still is greatly appreciated, but good lawyers don't come cheap and that dough is all but burnt up now and the every-hungry wig and robe wearers are, like Oliver Twist, demanding more.

So readers, is there any chance that you might me able to throw a few bucks in the hat to help keep a starving racing writer out of jail and still writing? I would  be deeply grateful and promise to pay you back by writing heaps of fun and interesting stuff once the court allows me to get back to doing what I do best again.

Why, you never know, if we raise enough  dough we might even run an application for a bail variation so that we can get back on the air before the 3rd Origin game kicks off at Lang Park. Now that'd be a beauty wouldn't it? So dig deep!

I hope you're missing my stories as much as I am missing writing them for you, and I can't wait to be back tapping them racing tales again soon. In the meantime stay safe and happy punting!

Cheers, Archie

P.S. Did I mention that I'm chasing donations toward my legal defense?

P.S.S. How much more of this bloody police harassment can a poor old Jeebung koala bear?

P.S.S.S. Just to be clearer than mud, I am talking here about a small cabal of non-uniformed promotion-seeking senior officers who spend most most of their time behind desks, not the good women and men of the broader Queensland Police Force who work their guts out and put their bodies on the line every day to keep our streets safe. They are the good gals guys, and want to sort out the bad bludgers as much as we do, not protect them like some do, and where would we be without these heroes in glue? Up the creek without a paddle that's where. The same place as I'll be if I can't raise some legal spondoolarama. Nudge, nudge, hint, hint sports fans. Over to you.
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Thank you so much to all who have donated to assist with the legal costs involved in defending this writer's quest to tell the back stories and the big stories about Queensland racing, and how it has been hijacked by sectional interests and individuals with selfish personal agendas that have nothing to do with restoring the Sport of Kings to the crown, and everything to do with personal enrichment or power, without a care for where it may leave our three great codes of racing in the days and years to come.

It's an expensive business this defending undue and improperly laid charges that haven't a skerrick of substance or a hope in Hades of ever getting over the line, but have just been laid to shut a writer up and shut him down, and lock him away if at all they can.

This below is how your donations to date have been spent, and for you kindness I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Unfortunately the good word on the street is that certain people in high places with plenty to lose if the true story about their ill deeds is told - and therefore plenty to gain by having me banged up - are actively canvassing new complainants against me and encouraging them to go and see certain people at the Hendra CIB who would be only too happy to turn their woe is me I've been sprung moans into a police complaint, so that further bull dung charges can be laid against me.

I've written about so many rorts and so many rorters that it's not going to be very hard for these wolves in sheep's clothing to induce some subjects of my stories to run off to Johnny (or Jilly, as the case may be) copper, so as night follows day armed plain clothes police will once again storm the Geebung citadel and upset the old and ailing, and the infants, and the innocents like me who just want to walk through the gates of Eagle Farm again and hear the Bantam shout 'they're off and racing!'.

This of course will mean more and more and even more legal expenses again; so if you are lucky enough to jag the quaddie this weekend please remember poor old Archie and the real good racing stories that he used to tell, and will again once we kick these crap charges to touch.

Good luck to all, and have a winning day.

You deserve it.

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Thank you to the many kind supporters who have donated to my legal defense. Your generosity and care is greatly appreciated, and I hope will assist me in getting back writing about the things that matter in racing really soon.

It's a sad day when a journalist can be cut off from telling the truth and exposing odium simply because the subjects of their stories run to the police and claim they are being harassed and that it is causing them angst.

I have been charged with 5 counts of stalking different, but professionally related, individuals. Each of the charges relates to one or more articles I have written about certain people accusing them of unethical or unlawful conduct.

None of the charges involves females; none involve any form of improper sexual conduct (Maggie is enough for me: I don't need to go shopping); there are no allegations of contact, physical or otherwise, other than an attempt/s to contact the subjects of stories to seek comment and/or provide a right of reply prior to publication; there are no allegations of anything at all other than what is contained in the stories.

It is worth noting that not one of the 5 people that I am ridiculously charges with 'stalking' has ever taken civil action against me for defamation or libel in relation to any story that I have written. There is a simple reason for this: the stories are true.

So why I am I being harassed by a certain cabal of plain-clothed police from the Hendra CIB, who seem to delight in coming to my home in packs with guns on their hips and frightening my elderly father and infant grandson as they force entry via warrant to remove my tools of trade, research files, telecommunication links to the outside world, and my wife and children's devices too?

I am not at liberty to place my opinion on the public record, but ask you to consider this.

My friend Hedley Thomas's brilliant podcast series 'The Teacher's Pet' - in which he all but openly (and in most people's view correctly) accuses a man of murder - has been downloaded by 1.2 million people and the eighth episode is about to be released.

I have accused no-one of murder or any such serious violent offence, but rather have made accusations of a range of wrongdoing by people who I firmly believe, based on evidence, have done what I have stated or suggested that I have.

My stories and those of Hedley Thomas, while worlds apart in content and probably quality (mine are better), are really of much the same vein. We are both investigative journalists who have done the hard slog and come up with certain conclusions based upon our research and subsequent hypothesis-testing and fact-checking.

However Hedley has not been charged with stalking, and I have. How does that work?

Don't think for a moment that I am suggesting that Australia's leading journalist is a stalker, for I am certainly not. I am simply stating unequivocally that I am not either.

The big difference though is that one of us works for the mainstream media and has the protection of the Murdoch empire's legal resources and funds, and the other works for himself and has no lawyers and no funds to pay for them.

That's why I am asking you to help if you can.

If I am silenced not only does the racing public lose a unique voice writing about the things that others don't and calling it as he sees it with neither fear nor favor; that's the least of it. The real issue is that by virtue of these totally absurd charges and the impact that they are having on my work and my life I am being used as an example to deter others who may wish to speak up or about issues of extreme importance to our sport.

Meanwhile we race on in the choppy seas at Doomben week after week, or are airlifted to the even rougher waters of Ipswich, or up and down the coast to tracks that are already doing more than their share of the lifting, and no-one is standing up and telling you how, who and why.

I'd love to keep doing so, but to do that I need to be able to pay lawyers to do their business while I concentrate on ours.

That can only be achieved with your support.

Racing matters, and so do the people who love it; and we deserve a fearless, independent voice.

Love me or hate me, agree or disagree with what I write; it doesn't matter. I'm the only one telling you the other side of the story, and that voice is mine.

Please help us keep it alive by digging deep and chucking something into the hat if you can.

Thanks sportsfans.

Good luck, and have a winning day.
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