Billionaire Chinese-Australian Chau Chak Wing has been awarded $590,000 in damages after winning a defamation suit against the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) and commercial network Nine.
Chau sued the media companies over a joint investigation called “Power and Influence” that aired on ABC’s Four Corners in June 2017.
Chau’s lawyers alleged the program carried six defamatory “imputations” that were “serious, false and defamatory.”
“Power and Influence” alleged that Chau was a double agent for the Chinese Communist Party (CCP), a significant political donor, and that he paid a $200,000 bribe to then-President of the General Assembly of the United Nations, John Ashe.
Justice Steve Rares upheld four of the imputations saying they were “untrue and seriously defamatory,” according to a judgement on Tuesday.
He also found that Chau’s business reputation had been injured and prevented the media companies from further publication of the program.
Both ABC and Nine were also responsible for paying the costs of the action.
The case follows a ruling last year where Chau was awarded damages for defamation over a 2015 Fairfax Media (now Nine) online article.