Tara Brown and 60 Minutes crew face fine after Lebanon kidnapping charges downgraded

60 Minutes reporter Tara Brown and her crew have seen the charges they were facing in Lebanon, relating to their involvement in a “child recovery operation”, downgraded to misdemeanours.

Brown now faces a fine for her role in the 'child recovery operation' in Lebanon.

Brown now faces a fine for her role in the ‘child recovery operation’ in Lebanon.

In the last 24 hours, the Lebanese court has announced the revised charges, which likely means that they will only have to pay a small fine, while also confirming the children’s Australia mother Sally Faulkner and the “child recovery operation specialists” still potentially face up to seven years in jail if they are convicted of the charge of kidnapping.

Nine’s 60 Minutes program has been embroiled in scandal for months now, over its decision to pay for the operation in Lebanon to retrieve Faulkner’s children in the streets of Beirut.

The Australian is quoting Lebanese prosecuting judge Rami Abdullah

“I was fair with them, much too fair, more than fair with their job. They go to difficult places and they were asked to be part of this by their bosses.’’

Nine has since done an internal investigation into the 60 Minutes Beirut scandal and eventually sacked producer Stephen Rice which also giving formal warnings to Brown, sound recordist David Ballment and cameraman Ben Williamson.

60 MinutesRice is now set to launch legal action against Nine for unfair dismissal. 

The downgraded charges means each of the four will have to pay a fine of less than $1000.

The Australian is also reporting the Nine Network has now paid more than $2m to deal with the scandal. According to the newspaper a series of payments, these include money to Faulkner’s ex-husband Ali Elamine and $500,000 to the station’s Lebanese legal team last week.

Read the full report in The Australian. 


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.