Pregnant Australian woman arrested at home for promoting anti-lockdown protest on Facebook
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BALLARAT, Australia, September 2, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – A pregnant woman in Australia was arrested in her own home in front of her two children for the “crime” of promoting an anti-lockdown event on Facebook.
Footage of the incident was filmed and broadcast live over Facebook, where it has now been viewed over 3 million times.
Police told Zoe Buhler, 28, that she was under arrest for “incitement” and that they would be seizing all computers and mobile devices on the property, whether or not they belonged to her.
Buhler, who uses the name “Zoe Lee” on Facebook, had used the social media platform to advertise an event called “Freedom Day” this coming Saturday, September 5 in Ballarat, a city to the northwest of Melbourne in the state of Victoria. The event was described as a “peaceful protest,” with the aim of ending lockdowns and standing up for human rights.Those planning to attend were urged to wear a mask and observe so-called social distancing rules.
The police officers made no response when Buhler informed them that she is pregnant and was scheduled to go for an ultrasound in an hour. The young mother told the police that she hadn’t done anything wrong, but that she would delete the post rather than be arrested in front of her two children.
“How about she just doesn't do the event? It's not like she’s done it, she made a post,” Buhler’s boyfriend, James Timmins, can be heard saying to the police.
Nevertheless, she was handcuffed while still in her pyjamas and taken into custody, before later being released on bail. Her case is due to be heard at Ballarat Magistrates Court January 25, 2021. Local media report that she is facing a $20,000 fine.
Buhler, who describes herself as a “witch,” has been using Facebook regularly to criticize the Victorian lockdown regime under which police have the power to enter private homes without a warrant among a host of other draconian measures.
Last month Victoria police chief commissioner Shane Patton was unapologetic as he explained that police had in some instances been smashing car windows due to people inside the cars not cooperating with police or following the newly imposed health guidelines.
Victoria Police Assistant Commissioner Luke Cornelius recently described anti-lockdown protestors as “selfish,” “boofheads,” and “bats***t crazy.” Mainstream Australian media celebrated Cornelius’ comments, describing them as a “stunning take-down of the ‘tin foil hat brigade.’”
Victorian police have now introduced an online system to encourage people to report on “suspected COVID-19 breaches” committed by their fellow Australians.