Bondi attack: Benjamin Cohen hires lawyers over Seven’s killer misidentification

Source: The Australian

Benjamin Cohen, the man who was wrongly named as the Bondi Junction attacker, has made the first legal moves in launching proceedings against the Seven Network.

Cohen has engaged two of Australia’s most revered defamation lawyers in Patrick George of Giles George as his solicitor and Sue Chrysanthou SC as his barrister to seek damages, according to multiple reports.

The university student was wrongly identified on Sunday by Weekend Sunrise as the killer.

However, it was later revealed by police that 40-year-old Joel Cauchi was the man responsible for killing six people and injuring several others at the busy shopping centre on Saturday afternoon.

A 20-year-old student at the University of Sydney, Cohen was named on social media (mainly on X) by various other accounts, with many highlighting his Jewish identity.

Seven also described him as “40-year-old lone-wolf attacker Benjamin Cohen”.

George confirmed to Nine Newspapers that he was representing Cohen: “I can confirm we have issued a concerns notice to Channel Seven today”.

Sunrise did not seek comment from Cohen’s family before wrongly identifying him, while his family also told the ABC that Seven blamed the error on a junior social media editor.

“It was escalated immediately and rectified. Seven sincerely apologises for the error,” a Seven spokesman said, adding that it was “human error”.

The legal action is another blow for Seven, an organisation that has spent more than its fair share of time embroiled in court proceedings of late.

Seven West Media owner Kerry Stokes financially backed Ben Roberts-Smith’s failed defamation action against Nine Newspapers, while sordid details of Spotlight producers’ conduct was detailed in Bruce Lehrmann’s failed defamation action.

On Monday it was found that on the balance of probabilities Lehrmann did rape Liberal staffer Brittany Higgins and dismissed the defamation claim.

Topics: defamation
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