Qantas CEO Alan Joyce got hit with a lemon meringue pie in a protest against marriage equality

Picture: Getty Images

As far as pies to the face go, this was the work of a professional:

The target – just about the highest profile CEO in Australia, Qantas boss Alan Joyce.

The moment – in front of 500 business people at at Perth’s Hyatt Regency.

And the pie – lemon meringue, a tasty classic. Highly smearable, but also soft.

And according to the man who somehow found a way for Joyce to wear it so publicly, that was important.

Tony Overheu paid $25.95 for the pie the night before the event. He wrapped it so it would hold together nicely, and popped it in his work ute at 6am yesterday.

Overheu this morning told 6PR’s Breakfast show he then drove to the Hyatt, walked straight through the front door with the pie and hid behind a curtain for “a couple of hours”.

Then, after Joyce had barely begun his address to the crowd, Overheu dispatched the pie with cold efficiency:

He walked off silently, and was taken away by security and arrested. Joyce left, got cleaned up, did away with the jacket and came back to applause.

Overheu is still yet to be charged, but he told 6PR he now regrets that he “didn’t understand that (he’d) breached the state’s criminal code”.

“My family are outraged, my wife is at my throat,” he said.

So, why? Essentially, it’s all in this statement Overheu gave 6PR:

“Middle Australia completely rejects corporate bullying aimed at social engineering.”

He took aim not only at Qantas, but Airbnb, Wesfarmers and Holden for supporting claims. And:

“The blatant bullying and extortion of Coopers Brewery was totally reprehensible.”

So there’s a strong link in there that points to Overheu’s possible views on marriage equality.

“CEOs need to respect Australia is a democracy where backdoor attempts to subvert the clear wishes of the overwhelming majority will cost companies bottom lines,” he said.

“Allan (sic) Joyce is paid $13 million to run airlines not bulldoze Australia socially against its will.”

But Overheu is not heartless. He chose lemon meringue because he understood Joyce has “a responsible job to do” and the pie was not going to hurt him.

But it may hurt Overheu, with the Qantas boss saying he is going to press charges against the “devout” Christian.

Joyce said he will continue to speak out on social and community issues.

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