In the case of David v Hosany  EWHC 2787 (QB), His Honour Judge Moloney QC considered a libel claim brought by the claimant, a Governor of the East London Foundation NHS Trust, in respect of three publications by the defendant, another Governor of the same Trust. These publications alleged that the claimant had intimidated and harassed the defendant, with two of the publications containing allegations of sexual harassment. Continue reading
In the case of Huda v Wells ( EWHC 2553 (QB)) Nicklin J held that information submitted to the osteopaths’ regulatory body was protected by absolute privilege and could not be the subject of an action for defamation or malicious falsehood. Continue reading
In the case of Loughran v Century Newspapers ( NICA 26) the Northern Ireland Court of Appeal considered a case in which a newspaper relied on the Curistan principle in relation to statutory qualified privilege and decided that a pleaded case of malice was not fit to go to the jury. Continue reading
Former banker Irfan Qadir has been awarded substantial damages at the conclusion of his long-running libel action against Associated Newspapers, publisher of the Mail on Sunday, following the publication of two defamatory articles in May and June 2011. It also apologised in Court in respect of the articles. A Statement in Open Court [pdf]was read before Mr Justice Tugendhat on 31 January 2013. Continue reading
Are Australian courts steadily subverting free speech? Media law academic Dr David Rolph thinks the High Court’s recent introduction of reasonableness into the defence of qualified privilege is another incremental step in the wrong direction.
Over the past few years, there have been concerns about real or perceived threats to freedom of speech in Australia. Continue reading
Debate on qualified privilege is often problematic as it is the grey area that lies between two fundamental rights: freedom of expression and protection of reputation. In England qualified privilege has become an important defence, and was firmly under the spotlight in the landmark case of Reynolds v Times Newspapers Limited. Continue reading
Mr Justice Tugendhat handed down judgment today after the trial of preliminary issues of privilege and malice in the libel action, Qadir v Associated Newspapers Limited, heard on 26-27 July 2012 ( EWHC 2606 (QB)). Novel issues concerning the media’s reporting of litigation and of court hearings, along with malice, were determined in what will be considered to be a landmark judgment. It is anticipated that the new Defamation Act will significantly broaden the scope of statutory privilege defences so this decision is likely to be of considerable importance in the future. Continue reading