News: Libel in the Supreme Court [Revised]

7 02 2011

Gary Flood

On 24 January 2011, the Supreme Court gave permission to appeal in the case of Flood v Times Newspapers. Lords Hope, Brown and Mance originally proposed to grant permission on the condition that the “Times” agreed to pay Mr Flood’s costs in any event. The Court has now granted permission on these terms.  The “Times” has to decide whether to pursue the appeal on this basis.  We commented on the Court of Appeal decision at the time and other discussions of it can be found in the “Table of Recent Cases” above. There is a report on the initial permission decision in the Press Gazette.

The defendants in the case of Clift v Slough Borough Council ([2010] EWCA Civ 1484)  have applied to the Supreme Court for permission to appeal against the decision of the Court of Appeal in December 2010 upholding Tugendhat J’s finding that the defence of qualified privilege did not apply when publication by a public authority was in breach of the claimant’s rights under the European Convention on Human Rights.  We had a case comment on the Court of Appeal decision by Lorna Skinner and Edward Craven.  It is not clear when the Supreme Court permission decision will be made.

Finally, we have already noted that Lords Hope Brown and Mance, on 15 November 2010, granted permission to appeal in the malicious falsehood case of Ajinomoto Sweeteners Europe SAS v ASDA Stores Limited ([2010] EWCA Civ 609).  This is the case in which the Court of Appeal determined that the “single meaning rule” did not apply to an action in malicious falsehood.  We did a case comment at the time.   It is not clear when this case will he heard.  It does not appear in the list of Supreme Court “Current Cases” and does not seem to have been listed for a hearing.


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7 02 2011
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10 02 2011

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