Riley libel case: she’s trying to buy justice again – will you help me stop her?

Countdown: the clock is ticking, and Rachel Riley is trying to force a court hearing of her duff bid to strike out my libel defence next month. If she has her way, I do not have the funds to fight it.

Rachel Riley seems determined to tell the world that she wants to buy justice – so who am I to get in the way?

Let’s discuss her latest tactic.

You’ll be aware that she has launched a court application to strike out all or part of my defence against her claims. It will cost up to £17,000 for me to defend myself against this part of her court action alone.

The High Court has indicated that it may have time to consider the application in July – meaning I would have less than a month to crowdfund a very large amount of money.

But the members of my legal team have pointed out that it is not possible for them to attend court in July as they have other cases and childcare commitments due to the Covid-19 lockdown.

Here’s the nasty bit:

Ms Riley’s representatives have responded furiously, demanding that the court force a July date for this application to be heard.

They say crowdfunding should not be a reason to delay a libel case and this could establish a precedent.

What they don’t say is that such a precedent would enhance justice by keeping both sides in a civil case on an even footing.

And they say if my legal team cannot attend, I should instruct alternative counsel.

Again, what they don’t say is that this would place an extra cost burden on me.

Rachel Riley is far, far more wealthy than me. She could afford to spend £60,000 on the “meanings” hearing last December alone. Rushing the hearing of this application so that it happens next month would put her at a huge advantage if I am unable to raise the funds to fight it.

Her application itself is drivel. My legal team and I can defeat it – if we get the chance.

We are fighting Ms Riley’s demands, and we have good arguments. Courts should deal with cases justly and at proportionate cost so that both parties are on an equal footing. But the hearing will be listed at a time that best suits the judge.

So I must try to be ready for a court hearing within a few weeks. And that means I must appeal to your kindness again.

I am bitterly sorry that I have to ask you for more help, especially at a time when we are all feeling the financial squeeze of the Covid crisis – but justice is at risk of being bought, and the facts are at risk of being denied.

So, please:

Consider making a donation yourself, if you can afford it, via my own CrowdJustice page.

Email your friends, asking them to pledge to the CrowdJustice site.

Post a link to Facebook, asking readers to pledge.

On Twitter, tweet in support, quoting the address of the appeal.

On other social media platforms, please mention the campaign there, quoting the appeal address.

This is more vital now than ever before, so I’d like to appeal to you especially to make an effort to encourage other people to donate.

You can tell that Ms Riley’s team are trying to use her huge financial advantage to influence the courts. They want to make sure not only that I fail, but that a precedent is set to ensure that everybody like me, who has to crowdfund for legal action, will fail in the future. It is vital that they be stopped.

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

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