Laura Robinson seeks public funding for her defense against John Furlong
Laura Robinson is seeking public financial support for her legal battle against John Furlong. Photo: Play the Game / Thomas Søndergaard
Robinson is being sued by Furlong for defamation after writing an article, published in the Vancouver newspaper The Georgia Straight in September 2012, alleging that Furlong had physically abused First Nations children while working as a physical educations teacher at a Catholic School from the late 1960s.
The allegations were supported by signed affidavits from eight of Furlong’s former students and a number of anonymous statements. Furlong initially also sued the Georgia Straight, but dropped the charges in order to accelerate his suit against Robinson.
As Robinson is a freelance journalist, she is not covered by the newspaper’s insurance policy and must therefore take care of all legal expenses on her own. Through the website ‘The Laura Robinson Defense Fund’, she is therefore seeking donations from the public for her defense.
“If Mr. Furlong wanted to "have this settled in court" as he purports to want, he should have set a trial date in December 2012; he should have set a date for discovery at the same time. He has done neither,” the website states.
In a written statement from her lawyer, Robinson said she “wants the case heard and decided by a judge of the Supreme Court of British Columbia.
To that end she has obtained a trial date of January 19, 2015 and is waiting to see if Mr. Furlong will instruct his counsel to file and serve a Notice of Trial,”, writes the Global News.