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Marcus_Einfeld

Marcus Einfeld

Marcus Richard Einfeld AO QC (born 22 September 1939) is an Australian lawyer, judge and social activist who served as a Justice of the Federal Court of Australia and the Supreme Courts of New South Wales, Western Australia and the Australian Capital Territory. He was President of the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission between 1986 and 1990. Einfeld has been named in a series of scandals, and was arrested for perjury on 29 March 2007 and committed to stand trial on 13 December 2007.

Background

Einfeld's parents were the Labor Party politician Syd Einfeld and his wife Billie. He studied at Sydney Boys High School from 1951 to 1955,and obtained his BA and LLB from the University of Sydney.

Legal career

Einfeld is a former Justice of the Federal Court of Australia and of the Supreme Courts of New South Wales, Western Australia and the ACT. He was President of the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission between 1986 and 1990. He retired as a judge in April 2001. He has been named by the National Trust of Australia as a National Living Treasure.

Community and social involvement

Einfeld has served as an executive member of the New South Wales Jewish Board of Deputies and as a Councillor on the Executive Council of Australian Jewry. He also started and served as the first chairman of the Australian Campaign for the Rescue of Soviet Jewry, following his earlier establishment of the London-based National Campaign for Soviet Jewry of the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Einfeld has been a spokesperson for Israeli and Jewish causes and has often confronted Palestinian supporters, the media, the United Nations, universities and other institutions. He was an invited speaker at United Israel Appeal (UIA) functions in Britain, the United States of America, Europe, Canada and Australia. He is patron of the Australian Association of Jewish Holocaust Survivors and Descendants and of the Sydney Jewish Museum.

Einfeld has served as Austcare's "Ambassador for Refugees" and as an "Ambassador for Children" for UNICEF.

In 2002 Einfeld was presented a United Nations Association of Australia Founder's Award for his contribution to justice and human rights.

Controversies

In a March 2006 address on the war on terror and civil liberties at the University of Western Sydney, Einfeld stated that Western powers, including Australia, had supported terrorist regimes financially, and that new sedition laws showed that Australia was "leaning towards an autocratic framework".

Einfeld was the President of Australian Legal Resources International, a non-profit independent group of lawyers that supported democracy, human rights and the rule of law in developing countries. In August 2006 this organisation collapsed, leaving creditors, including AusAID, the Australian Taxation Office, and St George Bank "thousands of dollars out of pocket.

In August 2006, Einfeld contested a speeding ticket by claiming he had lent his car to an old friend, Professor Teresa Brennan, at the time it was caught by a speed camera; he also signed a statutory declaration to that effect. (While the fine was only $AUD77, a conviction would have left Einfeld with only one demerit point on his driver's licence.) However, it was later revealed that Professor Brennan had been killed in a road accident in the United States in January 2003.

In September 2006, Einfeld gave the NSW police leave to search his Woollahra home as part of their investigation of his evidence in the speeding case. They removed part of his home computer for forensic examination. On March 29, 2007, Einfeld was arrested by the NSW police. He was charged with 13 offences, including perjury, perverting the course of justice and making and using false statutory declarations. Einfeld's committal hearing was held in December 2007. One charge (hindering an investigation) was dropped; Einfeld was committed to stand trial on charges of perjury, perverting the course of justice and traffic offences.

Since his speeding fine case came to attention in the Australian media, Einfeld has been the subject of ongoing media reports alleging various other improprieties, including padding his curriculum vitae, purchasing doctorates from US diploma mills, and plagiarism.

References

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