It has been hard work, but This Writer’s amended defence against Rachel Riley’s ever-ridiculous accusation that I libelled her has been completed and I am ready to take the matter to court for trial.
I don’t think it will be giving away much if I tell you that I’m saying my article is on the following matters of public interest:
- Online bullying and harassment including death threats.
- The power of an adult celebrity compared to the relative powerlessness of a vulnerable child suffering anxiety.
- Mental health.
- The public conduct of Rachel Riley, a prominent public figure and, in particular, statements she had made or caused to be made publicly in national print and broadcast media and on Twitter.
I don’t think there is any doubt that the article did focus on these issues. Riley’s advocates will try to argue that I did not have reason to say what I did, with regard to them.
And now we begin the run-up to the trial itself, which is likely to take several days, when it happens, and will therefore cost tens of thousands of pounds. I don’t know how much yet because it depends on the amount of fuss Riley is likely to kick up beforehand.
Let’s all bear in mind the fact that this matter was delayed by a year because Riley decided she wanted to try to strike out all my defences – and failed.
She’ll still want to find ways of delaying a trial because, as far as I can tell, she still thinks her best (only?) chance to win is by depriving me of the funds I need to pay for my defence.
So far, she has been proved entirely mistaken in that belief, too.
But now the pressure is really on and I must rely on you to give as much as you can, as often as you can, until the case is finally closed:
Consider making a donation yourself, via the 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.
Please, please, please tell as many people as you can about this case, and encourage them to contribute too.
I’ll endeavour to post at least one update per week – more if event warrant them.
The current situation is that I have submitted my amended defence to Riley’s legal team, who may object if they so wish. If they do, I’ll take action to handle it.
Then… well, we’ll see what happens then, won’t we?
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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