YouTube comedian Friendlyjordies – aka Jordan Shanks – has thanked fans after receiving over $1 million in donations to fight a defamation case brought against him by NSW Deputy Premier John Barilaro.

“A huge thank you to everyone that has supported us over the past month,” Friendlyjordies said in a statement regarding the news.

“We will never forget this generosity. We have received more than 24,000 individual donations – that’s more people than those who first voted John Barilaro into parliament. We know the public is on our side in this battle.”

Xenophon Davis partner Mark Davis added in a media release on Thursday: “We are profoundly grateful for the support of tens of thousands of Australians who have seen the importance of these legal battles.

“We believe these cases go to the heart of a citizen’s right to challenge, investigate and criticise politicians. We are inspired by this level of support.”

More than 24,000 donations have been received — with former PM Kevin Rudd among them — that totalled a staggering $1.06m that will likely be used to pay legal fees for Friendlyjordies producer Kristo Langker and his family following his arrest by the NSW Police fixated persons unit in June.

Last month, Langker was charged with two counts of stalking or intimidating Deputy Premier John Barilaro with intent to cause fear of physical or mental harm.

“I am facing the overwhelming forces of the police and the Deputy Premier of this state and now I have the means to fight back,” Langker said in the Xenophon-Davis media release.

“I cannot imagine how horrifying it is for others who’ve also endured politically motivated intimidation but don’t have the means to resist.”

Meanwhile, ex-PM Kevin Rudd has penned an article on his website explaining his choice to donate to the Friendlyjordies’ legal fund.

“Whatever your feelings about Friendlyjordies, the potential consequences of these legal battles are too big to ignore,” Rudd wrote.

“For that reason, I have donated to Langker’s legal defence fund and encourage others to do so as well.

“In the meantime, I respect Barilaro’s right to defend his reputation in the civil courts.”