Former West Coast Eagles footballer Daniel Chick is suing the AFL, a prominent sports website and its football editor for damages, claiming he was defamed in articles about Ben Cousins’ hospital admission for drug-induced psychosis.
Chick has launched legal action in the Supreme Court, alleging he was defamed in an article written by sports journalist Kim Hagdorn and published on sportsnewsfirst.com.au in January last year.
He also claims the defamatory material was republished on the AFL’s website and online by Melbourne sports radio station SEN.
Chick claims he was “brought into hatred, contempt, ridicule and thereby suffered damage” as a result of the defamatory material being published.
The writ lodged late last week, which has not yet been served, names sportsnewsfirst.com.au, Hagdorn – the website’s AFL editor - and the AFL as defendants.
Chick, who was de-listed by West Coast after the 2007 season, is seeking a permanent injunction restraining the three parties from “repeating the defamatory publication” and is suing them for damages, aggravated damages, interest and costs.
The writ reveals Chick is suing for aggravated damages after the article continued to be published despite his previous lawyers notifying Hagdorn in January and February last year that the publication “was false and defamatory”.
The information was published in January last year when former AFL star Cousins was admitted to a mental health facility because of prolonged psychosis related to his battle with methamphetamine addiction.
A sportsnewsfirst.com.au representative said they would "defend any action" brought against them by Chick.
Chick and the AFL have been contacted for comment.