Ben Roberts-Smith's ex-wife Emma texts friend about war hero

Ben Roberts-Smith's ex-wife Emma texts friend about war hero
Ben Roberts-Smith's ex-wife Emma texts friend about war hero

Text messages sent by Ben Roberts-Smith's former wife in support of the war hero before he was publicly accused of killing prisoners have been released. 

Emma Roberts says in one message to her friend Danielle Scott that 'someone has said a hell of a lot about Ben but they also have to prove it.'

Mr Roberts-Smith is suing Nine newspapers over stories they published in June 2018 accusing him of committing war crimes while serving in Afghanistan with the SAS.

The texts from Ms Roberts to Ms Scott were sent a month before the first story's publication. She has since agreed to give evidence against him.

Mr Roberts-Smith left Ms Roberts in January 2020 and she gave a statement to Nine a fortnight after their divorce was settled in February this year.

When the contents of the texts were first read in court last month, Australia's most decorated soldier took a swipe at his now ex-wife over some of what she had said to Ms Scott. 

Text messages sent by Ben Roberts-Smith's former wife in support of the war hero before he was publicly accused of killing prisoners have been released. Emma Roberts has since flipped and is giving evidence for Nine newspapers. The former couple is pictured in London in 2012

Text messages sent by Ben Roberts-Smith's former wife in support of the war hero before he was publicly accused of killing prisoners have been released. Emma Roberts has since flipped and is giving evidence for Nine newspapers. The former couple is pictured in London in 2012

Emma Roberts says in one message to her friend Danielle Scott that 'someone has said a hell of a lot about Ben but they also have to prove it.' Mr Roberts-Smith (right) is suing Nine newspapers over a series of stories accusing him of committing war crimes in Afghanistan

Emma Roberts says in one message to her friend Danielle Scott that 'someone has said a hell of a lot about Ben but they also have to prove it.' Mr Roberts-Smith (right) is suing Nine newspapers over a series of stories accusing him of committing war crimes in Afghanistan

Mr Roberts-Smith is Australia's most decorated living soldier. His defamation trial against Nine has been disrupted by Covid-19 but resumed this week to take evidence from three Afghan witnesses about the death of a man called Ali Jan at Darwan in 2012

 Mr Roberts-Smith is Australia's most decorated living soldier. His defamation trial against Nine has been disrupted by Covid-19 but resumed this week to take evidence from three Afghan witnesses about the death of a man called Ali Jan at Darwan in 2012

The Victoria Cross recipient was giving evidence about what another SAS member known as Person 5 had told an offical inquiry into alleged war crimes.

Person 5 and Mr Roberts-Smith were both being investigated by the Inspector-General of the Australian Defence Force (IGADF).

Person 5 had been Mr Roberts-Smith's patrol commander in Afghanistan and was called in to be questioned by the IGADF on May 9, 2018.

He had been due to fly to the United States after giving evidence to the inquiry. 

Barrister Nicholas Owens SC, for Nine, suggested Person 5 subsequently revealed to Mr Roberts-Smith 'in very great detail' various allegations that had been made about his service in Afghanistan.

The court heard discussing what was said during such interviews was against Defence regulations.

Mr Roberts-Smith told the court Person 5, who was a close friend, had merely sent him a letter of complaint about his treatment by the IGADF investigators.

Part of that letter said: 'They were pushing the fact that BRS wandered off whenever he wanted and did whatever he wanted' while on deployment in Afghanistan.

Mr Owens read from text messages Ms Roberts sent to Ms Scott after Person 5 gave evidence to the inquiry.

A series of text messages between Emma Roberts and her friend Danielle Scott relate to evidence given by Mr Roberts-Smith's fellow SAS member Person 5 to an inquiry into alleged war crimes in Afghanistan

A series of text messages between Emma Roberts and her friend Danielle Scott relate to evidence given by Mr Roberts-Smith's fellow SAS member Person 5 to an inquiry into alleged war crimes in Afghanistan

Mr Roberts-Smith is also suing his ex-wife Emma Roberts, claiming she broke into his email account. She is pictured outside her Brisbane home on June 4

Mr Roberts-Smith is also suing his ex-wife Emma Roberts, claiming she broke into his email account. She is pictured outside her Brisbane home on June 4

'Hey mate, [Person 5] rang BRS late [followed by a sad face emoji],' the first message said. 'He was drilled for hours! Lots of questions about Ben and even to the point of questioning his VC action [sad face].

'Hence to say he didn't get much sleep. [Person 5] was free to leave for the US with 5 hrs until his flight!!

Ms Scott: 'So if they let [Person 5] go... that's gotta be a good sign right?' 

Ms Roberts: 'Yeh. [followed by a thumbs-up emoji] It's obvious that someone has said a hell of a lot about Ben. But they also have to be able to prove it.'

Mr Roberts-Smith denied the texts showed he told his wife that Person 5 had disclosed detailed information about allegations against him which had been revealed while Person 5 was being interviewed.

'It looks like she's forming her own opinion which is reasonably typical of my ex-wife,' he told the court.

Ms Roberts and Ms Scott have said they will give evidence for Nine. Person 5 is listed to give evidence for Mr Roberts-Smith. 

Ben Roberts-Smith's Victoria Cross made him the most famous soldier in Australia but also allegedly led to jealousy among some of his colleagues. The Queen is pictured shaking hands with him during an audience at Buckingham Palace in November 2011

Ben Roberts-Smith's Victoria Cross made him the most famous soldier in Australia but also allegedly led to jealousy among some of his colleagues. The Queen is pictured shaking hands with him during an audience at Buckingham Palace in November 2011 

Mr Roberts-Smith is suing newspapers including the Sydney Morning Herald which ran this front page investigation into allegations of war crimes committed in Afghanistan on the weekend of June 9 and 10, 2018

Mr Roberts-Smith is suing newspapers including the Sydney Morning Herald which ran this front page investigation into allegations of war crimes committed in Afghanistan on the weekend of June 9 and 10, 2018

Person 5 features in allegations of war crimes Nine has made about a raid on a compound called Whiskey 108 at Kakarak in southern Afghanistan on April 12, 2009.

That day Mr Roberts-Smith shot dead an Afghan male with a prosthetic leg. Nine claims that man was a prisoner but Mr Roberts-Smith says he was an insurgent armed with a rifle.

Mr Roberts-Smith has also denied standing by while a junior SAS member (Person 4) killed a second Afghan male taken into custody at Whiskey

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