December 24, 2012

"British paper sues Lance Armstrong for $1.5m over lost libel action."

"Sunday Times paid now-disgraced cyclist $485,000 in 2006 over claims that he had taken performance-enhancing drugs."

That reminds me of this news item from The Des Moines Register, June 18, 1959, reprinted in Bill Bryson's "The Life and Times of the Thunderbolt Kid: A Memoir" (p. 106):
A high court jury awarded entertainer Liberace 8,000 pounds ($22,400) damages Wednesday in a libel suit against the London Daily Mirror. The jurors decided after 3½ hours of deliberation that a story in 1956 by Mirror journalist William N. Connor implied that the pianist was a homosexual. Among the phrases Liberace cited in his suit was Connor’s description of him as “everything he, she or it can want.” He also described the entertainer as “fruit-flavored.”

16 comments:

traditionalguy said...

What is there about Res Judicata the Brits don't understand.

caseym54 said...

How much will all the Birthers get when we finally find out Obama WAS born in Kenya?

Mick Havoc said...

Did Connor conduct a taste test?

EDH said...

Yea, I was about to say, what about the judicial infallibility doctrine of res judicata.

It wasn't a settlement, the "newspaper... lost a libel action".

caseym54 said...

Um... *they finally find out...

tim maguire said...

As I understand it, truth is not a defense in the UK. That's why libel tourists love it so much.

EDH said...

Well, they're also saying it was a "settlement", maybe to avert an appeal?

But can the British substitute the finding of the "US Anti-Doping Agency" on the issue for one of its own courts of law?

EDH said...

The jurors decided after 3½ hours of deliberation that a story in 1956 by Mirror journalist William N. Connor implied that the pianist [Liberace] was a homosexual.

The British must be slow on the up-take.

Austin Powers: Jimi Hendrix...deceased.
Drugs.

Janis Joplin.
Deceased.
Alcohol.

Mama Cass.
Deceased.
Ham sandwich.

Zugabe: Good morning, Austin.
You know, I sometimes forget you've missed out on the last 30 years. Fall of the Berlin Wall the first female British Prime Minister end of apartheid.

Austin Powers: Yeah, and I can't believe Liberace was gay. I mean, women loved him! I didn't see that one coming, no.

tmitsss said...

Author Jeffery Archer went to jail over perjury in his successful libel trial

Left Bank of the Charles said...

The mother country needs to swallow its pride and finally adopt the free speech principle, and perhaps a few others from our bill of rights.

bpm4532 said...

caseym54: what if he was born here but renounced his citizenship at some point?

bpm4532 said...

Why are the British so concerned about homosexuals? Their population must bulge with them.

Dante said...

What does the law say about this? It seems the paper is still in the wrong, for writing information that wasn't proven. That's wrong, and it makes sense the Times was penalized so it and other newspapers stop the bad behavior.

On the other hand, as it's pretty clear now that he had taken the drugs, it doesn't seem like Armstrong should benefit either.

Also, isn't there any requirement for Armstrong to submit to the judge/jury that he had not taken performance enhancing drugs? Of can one get away with simply saying "You have no proof and it's damaging to me."

Astro said...

Sounds like someone's still got his knickers in a twist over that loss.
Do they really have enough evidence that he was using these drugs back in 2006? Does it matter? It would be hilarious if they lost this second lawsuit, too.

Emil Blatz said...

Wait a minute, are you suggesting that Liberace was gay?

ErnieG said...

British libel law makes British newspapers do strange things. For example they can't say somebody was arrested and is being interrogated. It comes out something like "Mr Ripper is assisting police with their enquiries." Or if, say, a Member of Parliament makes a statement while obviously very drunk, they say "The Member from East Woodshed appeared tired."