Bruce Lehrmann texted a friend asking ‘got any gear’ and saying ‘need bags’ on the night Brittany Higgins‘ rape allegations became public, court documents have revealed.
The former Liberal party staffer told his friends he wanted to ‘get lit’ as ‘no one had work tomorrow’ on the night of February 15, 2021.
That was the same night Ms Higgins appeared on The Project and alleged she had been raped in Parliament House in 2019 by an unnamed man.
Mr Lehrmann is suing Channel 10 and news.com.au for defamation over reports which were published in March 2021 about the allegations. He claims that the reports led to certain people identifying him as the accused.
He has always denied the allegations.
Bruce Lehrmann texted a friend asking ‘got any gear’ and saying ‘need bags’ on the night Brittany Higgins’ rape allegations became public, court documents have revealed
After his cross-examination on Thursday, where he revealed he was ‘outraged’ by the allegations, court documents were made public showing all the texts he sent and received on the day the news broke.
A message log shows the staffer spent the evening in his lawyer Warwick Korn’s office drinking scotch and watching The Project – which featured an interview with Brittany Higgins.
He then texted his friend four consecutive texts reading: ‘need bags’, ‘let’s get it done’ ‘no one has work tomorrow’ followed by ‘paying’ ‘let’s get lit’.
About 20 minutes later, he texted a work friend saying ‘got any gear’ but she replied saying she was at home and they needed to ‘keep it clean’.
After his cross-examination, where he revealed he was ‘outraged’ by the allegations, , court documents were made public showing all the texts he sent and received on the day the news broke
He then texted another friend to say ‘Get here, it’s good’ followed by ‘How many bags?’
At the same time, a colleague texted him saying ‘tomorrow won’t be good’ and that he needed to ‘rein the s*** in’.
The work friend added: ‘Clear your name mate that’s all that matters. You only have your name and one name’.
‘You need to take this seriously mate. Go home and don’t leave your apartment’.
The former Liberal party staffer told his friends he wanted to ‘get lit’ as ‘no one had work tomorrow’ on the night of February 15, 2021. Mock-up of his WhatsApp messages is shown
Mr Lehrmann is suing Channel 10 and news.com.au for defamation over reports which were published in March 2021 about Ms Higgins (pictured) allegations. He claims that the reports led to certain people identifying him as the accused
The court documents also reveal messages from early in the day, when Mr Lehrmann discovered the news after a friend texted him with a link to the story asking if he ‘knew this chick???’
Mr Lehrmann replied saying t he ‘worked with her briefly’ and ‘(she) was at team drinks etc’.
His friend replied saying it was a ‘pretty cooked allegation’ and asked if he ‘knew who the girl was’.
Mr Lehrmann said he didn’t have the ‘faintest idea’.
‘I haven’t been approached by anyone’ he wrote.
Around half an hour later, another friend texted him asking ‘if had any gossip on who the Canberra rape guy is’ before adding ‘the yarn says ”rising star” so that rules out our mates but who else?’.
He replied he had ‘no idea in the slightest’ and that he ‘hadn’t been approached by anyone’ before saying that he ‘assumed it will fizzle’.
‘She [Ms Higgins] is on the Project tonight which isn’t exactly prime time stuff’ he texted, before adding ‘they wouldn’t name would they … pretty slanderous stuff’.
Mr Lehrmann sent a series of messages to his then-girlfriend Greta Sinclair after the allegations against him aired (pictured). He later told the court most of them were ‘fabricated’ to ‘placate’ her because she was upset
His friend replied: ‘well it’s defamatory’.
The Project or news.com.au article did not name Mr Lehrmann. In his defamation suit, he is claiming their stories included details that ‘could identify him’ to certain people.
By 3pm, Mr Lehrmann had secured lawyer Warwick Korn and sat down with him in his Sydney office and fumed as Higgins accused him of raping her.
Texts from the next day show him thanking the lawyer for support.
Mr Lehrmann’s girlfriend at the time, Greta Sinclair, was distraught over the extraordinary televised accusations.
He placated her by firing off messages suggesting his lawyer had told him that he was a ‘pawn’ and ‘part of a bigger political hatchet job’.
During further cross-examination on Thursday, Mr Lehrmann admitted to Ten’s lawyer Matthew Collins KC that Mr Korn never said that.
Mr Lehrmann’s girlfriend at the time, Greta Sinclair, was distraught over the extraordinary televised accusations. He is pictured
Brittany Higgins leaves the ACT Magistrates Court with members of her legal team in Canberra on October 14
Text messages emerged where Mr Lehrmann told Ms Sinclair that he was having a ‘glass of scotch’ in Mr Korn’s office while waiting for Lisa Wilkinson’s interview with Ms Higgins on the current affairs show.
‘If I’m named tonight I’m up for millions in defamation … (Mr Korn) said I won’t see the light of a courtroom,’ he reassured her.
Later that evening, at 10.02pm, he sent Ms Sinclair another message that said: [Mr Korn] keeps taking notes though, very professional’.
While being grilled in court, Mr Lehrmann admitted Mr Korn was not in fact taking notes during their conversation and insisted that he just wanted to make Ms Sinclair feel OK.
‘I wanted her to think I had my house was in order’