2GB and Ray Hadley are defending a defamation action brought by property developer Toplace on the basis of truth and honest opinion.
Hadley filed his defence in court this week, which was rejected by solicitors acting for Toplace founder Jean Nassif.
Nassif filed a defamation action against Hadley and 2GB last year, over a series of broadcasts in 2019 and 2020 which raised concerns about the Atmosphere apartment complex at Castle Hill, built by Toplace in 2018.
In his statement of claim Nassif says Hadely incorrectly inferred he was a “dishonest” and “shoddy” developer.
Hadley’s defence will rely on reports from the NSW Building Commissioner, Department of Fair Trading and Quantity Surveyors to substantiate the truth defence.
Toplace was recently ordered by NSW Fair Trading to rectify non-compliant cladding on the outside of the Atmosphere apartments after inspectors found it was not properly water-proofed.
Hadley’s defence team included evidence to show council inspectors had found fire and safety issues within the Atmosphere apartments, and he also referenced a list of other Toplace developments where owners were suing over alleged defects. The list includes the Parramatta Rise and the Riviera apartments in Parramatta (pictured), Vicinity Development in Canterbury, Jolyn Place in Rosebery and the Park Gove Development in Botany.
The case continues in the Federal Court.