‘Coming for you’: Chilling email to Lehrmann

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Bruce Lehrmann received an anonymous email reading “coming for you” and warning him of “what might be around the corner” – weeks before Brittany Higgins’ rape allegation was made public.

That’s according to an exhibit among a pile of Federal Court documents publicly released on Friday as part of Mr Lehrmann’s defamation case.

Mr Lehrmann is suing Channel 10 and Lisa Wilkinson, as well as News Corp’s News Life Media and Samantha Maiden, over their TV and online stories which broke Brittany Higgins’ allegation on February 15, 2021.

He strenuously denies having sex with Ms Higgins and the criminal charge against him was dropped.

According to court documents, the email was sent to the former liberal staffer on January 25 – the night Grace Tame won Australian of the Year and three weeks before the stories on Higgins broke.

Lehrmann leaves the Federal Court on Thursday, May 16. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Flavio BrancaleoneLehrmann leaves the Federal Court on Thursday, May 16. Picture: NCA NewsWire/Flavio Brancaleone

It read:

“A woman spoke about what happened to her tonight, and she’s Australian of the Year.

I want you to have a think about what you did, and what might be around the corner for you.

It’s inspiring when justice is delivered and the truth comes out. You know what they said: The truth will set you free”.

The email continued:

“How many people know what you did, and how many did you tell. How many cameras are in Parliament House and how many people tracked down the vision.

Think about it. Two former staffers from Aussies, now security guards.

It’s going to be a magical 2021”.

The email Bruce Lehrmann received.The email Bruce Lehrmann received.

Three months after receiving the threatening email, Mr Lehrmann forwarded it to police, writing that it came “from the below address, which I do not own or have ever set up”. The email address he referred to was: “[email protected]”.

Mr Lehrmann was not named in the initial media reports on February 15, 2021, but claims in his defamation case that he was identified by other details they included.

After being charged with sexual intercourse without consent, he was named in the media in August 2021.

Bruce Lehrmann forwarded the email to police.Bruce Lehrmann forwarded the email to police.

The first trial was declared a mistrial due to jury misconduct and the second one did not proceed over concerns about Ms Higgins’ mental health. Prosecutors then dropped the charge.

Given Mr Lehrmann took two years to sue the outlets and journalists over the coverage – twice the normal legal time limit to start such proceedings – Justice Michael Lee has to rule on whether to extend that deadline.

His decision will pave the way for whether the case goes to trial or not.

Mr Lehrmann’s legal team is relying on three reasons for his delay in suing: receiving legal advice from criminal lawyer Warwick Korn against doing so, the fact he was also facing criminal proceedings and his mental health.

Evidence in the interlocutory hearing to determine whether the case will go to trial concluded on Thursday, when Justice Lee reserved the case for judgment at a later date.

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