Ex-wife labels Roberts-Smith ‘Titanic’

Greta Stonehouse |

Ben Roberts-Smith’s former wife hopes Australia’s most decorated soldier “survives this nightmare” after denying she sought revenge or wanting to destroy him in court. 

Emma Roberts has given evidence over two days in the Federal Court against her ex-husband on behalf of the media outlets he is suing for defamation. 

She denied loathing and detesting the war veteran she was married to for 17 years despite describing him as a “lying cheating c*** of a human,” after their marriage broke down in January 2020. 

Ms Roberts frequently messaged her best friend Danielle Scott, and a number of their personal texts from November 2020 were read out on Tuesday. 

“I reckon we get our heads together to get you financially sufficient,” Ms Scott wrote.

“It doesn’t matter what happens to him or what jail cell he rots in,” she followed up.

Ms Roberts replied “yes,” but denied messages of two emoji symbols depicting laughter meant she was enthusiastic about the prospect of Mr Roberts-Smith going to jail.

She responded that she didn’t think he was going to jail but did believe he would “be destroyed,” and described him as the sinking ship “#Titanic”.

Ms Roberts said her life was plunged into “chaos” following negative news reports featuring the father of her children, and had become “very frustrated at Ben” during their divorce. 

She denied a suggestion she was “happy” the news media outlets subpoenaed her to give evidence on their behalf.

“Absolutely not,” she said. 

“You were seeking revenge?” her ex-husband’s barrister Bruce McClintock SC said.

“No I was not.”

She also disputed accusations she leaked confidential emails to Nine journalists after saying Ms Scott was given the “RS Group” account password to send a “cease and desist” letter to his mistress.

Mr McClintock said this was a fabrication made up in the witness box to explain why Ms Scott was “rummaging through my client’s account,” approximately 101 times. 

Ms Roberts denied this or that it was a “sneaky and dishonest” thing amounting to “eavesdropping”.

“She was helping me in a very difficult time,” she said of Ms Scott’s support. 

“You would love to see my client lose this case wouldn’t you?” Mr McClintock said. 

“No,” she said. 

“I hope Ben survives this nightmare.”

The Victoria Cross recipient is suing The Age, The Sydney Morning Herald and The Canberra Times and denies their reports that he committed war crimes and murders in Afghanistan between 2006 and 2012.

The former SAS corporal has strenuously denied all wrongdoing including allegations he assaulted a woman.

As the couple’s marriage drew to a close Ms Roberts said she noticed Mr Roberts-Smith withdrawing cash from their joint bank account and found some in his briefcase in October 2019. 

She suspected he was “stashing” it in the garden and in March investigated the “obvious” backyard location underneath a rock and hose reel where she found buried USB sticks in a pink lunchbox. 

She said she distinctly remembers Mr Roberts-Smith later picking up the box and leaving “sweat drops” around the Sunshine Coast home. 

She denied making up this story, or that she made up a conversation in which Mr Roberts-Smith admitted sending threatening letters to other SAS soldiers after seeing him with the paper, envelopes and gloves. 

On Monday she told Justice Anthony Besanko that Mr Roberts-Smith asked her to lie about his affair if the story was revealed in the media. 

She didn’t want to lie, she said, but then he pointed to the couple’s children, saying: “If you don’t lie, you will lose them.”

The trial continues.

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