News State Victoria Judge scolds far-right activist as ‘childish’ for wearing uniform to court

Judge scolds far-right activist as ‘childish’ for wearing uniform to court

Neil Erikson wore a Toll vest to court. Photo: ABC
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A judge has described far-right activist Neil Erikson as “childish” for attending court wearing a high-visibility vest from his former employer, Toll.

Erikson has been found guilty of contempt of court for disobeying an order by Federal Circuit Court judge Suzanne Jones to return his uniform to the company.

Toll has argued in court that videos and photos Erikson has posted of himself wearing the uniform – including one where he confronted former Labor senator Sam Dastyari in a Melbourne pub – has affected its relationships with some clients.

Erikson, who has not worked for the company since 2016, arrived at court on Tuesday wearing a Toll uniform he claimed to have purchased at a second-hand shop for $2.

“Do you think it’s a good idea to wear that? Do you find it amusing?” Judge Jones asked him.

“I just want to show how pathetic Toll is,” Erikson replied.

“Are you not pathetic?” Judge Jones said.

“You can keep wearing it but you just enjoy the media attention.”

The exchange took place during a hearing to determine what punishment Erikson would receive.

“I’m just punching up against the big corporation,” Erikson said.

Judge Jones replied: “That’s just rubbish.”

Erikson told ‘listen to me’

At least twice Judge Jones told Erikson to “listen to me”.

Erikson has represented himself in court and told Judge Jones he had tried to comply with another court order to take down videos and photos on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter where he is wearing the uniform.

But he admitted some had not been removed because he had many accounts.

“I made a lot of effort to remove the other posts,” he said.

“I don’t think I should be punished.”

He also said he had no job, no money and no assets and might have to be jailed if he was punished.

The matter has been adjourned to a later date.