What a strange way to behave!
After my previous update on Rachel Riley’s libel case against me, in which I pointed out that she had failed to demonstrate any evidence that she had suffered financial losses as a result of my article, her solicitors seem to have taken offence.
You see, Riley may claim for general and special damages: general damages refers to the level of compensation that would make up for any harm caused to her reputation. Special damages is a loss of specific opportunities.
Her solicitors say no claim for special damages has been made, nor is such a claim pleaded on her behalf – which is also, as it happens, exactly what I’m saying.
My point was that they had threatened to make such a claim, as stated in Riley’s Particulars of Claim, paragraph 12: “The Claimant relies upon the inference that the publication of such serious allegations has caused and is likely to cause serious harm to her reputation. Should it be necessary, she relies on the following particulars in support of her case on serious harm to reputation…”
In paragraph 12.2: “The Claimant makes her living in the public eye: her reputation is crucial to the goodwill among public audiences and among broadcasters, production companies and others she relies on for her career.”
And in paragraph 12.3: “The Claimant in her professional and personal life is closely involved in projects and activities concerning children and young persons, such that allegations of misconduct towards a child or young person would be especially harmful.”
Her disclosures show no evidence that Riley has suffered any loss to her reputation among “broadcasters, production companies and others she relies upon for her career”, nor in the loss of involvement in “projects and activities concerning children and young persons”. It simply hasn’t happened.
When describing the damage she has suffered at paragraph 13, Riley expressly links back to paragraph 12.2 and 12.3 then makes a claim for “damages for libel” without distinguishing between general and special damages: “She relies upon the particulars of serious harm set out at paragraph 12 and its sub-paragraphs.”
So I had reason to expect evidence that she had lost work as a result of my article – and she has not provided it.
She can still claim general damages – but her failure regarding special damages suggests that nobody who makes much difference to her has actually changed their opinion of her because of my article.
I look forward to hearing her explain how my words have harmed her reputation among the general public any more than it has been harmed already by her own highly-self-publicised antics.
I would provide examples but I am also very much looking forward to the spectacle of her legal team shooting themselves in the feet (metaphorically) at the trial.
Of course, it means we still need to get this case to trial, so please…
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.
Matters are starting to accelerate again – this isn’t even the only issue between the parties at the moment, and I’m sure there will be more.
I will provide more information when I’m able to.
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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