Don Burke denial leads to legal case

A woman who alleges she was sexually harassed by TV gardener Don Burke is suing him for defamation.

Last year former actress Wendy Dent was one of several women who spoke out against Burke to ABC’s 7:30. She told the ABC Burke allegedly asked her to audition topless for a role on Burke’s Backyard.

“I went from feeling like this talent with a future to feeling like I was just a pair of boobs to him,” she said.

However in his interview with A Current Affair program last November Burke denied the claims.

“It’s a witch hunt. I might have terrified a few people, or whatever, and that I shouldn’t have done that, but these sort of things there no relation to who I am and what I am about. There are plenty of people who were there at the time and are furious, because these things didn’t happen,” he told ACA.

ABC reports Dent now alleges Burke has defamed her because he had implied she lied and that she was part of a witch hunt against him.

She has hired high-profile barrister Stuart Littlemore QC seeking damages and aggravated damages -notably, she is not suing Nine.

A statement of defence filed to the court says Burke’s comments in the interview were reasonable because they were “merely responding to Ms Dent’s public and repeated attacks on him”.

The statement claims Burke never spoke to Ms Dent about an audition for a role on his TV show.

The case is expected to be heard next year.

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