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THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

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THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Tony Bennett on 21.10.12 19:06

Here's a little story of how lawyers and their clients try to take advantage of someone who is not legally represented in court.

It concerns Edward Smethurst, Carter-Ruck's newly-married Senior Partner Isobel Martorell (formerly Hudson), and the McCanns' barrister, Jacob Dean, of 5 Raymond Buildings.

Here is a brief sumamry of the key events.

On 7 December 2011, at a hearing before Master McCloud, I accepted an offer from Edward Smethurst to settle his damages claim (for postings placed on this forum by me in May 2011). He asked me to make a payment of £2,500.00 to the Find Madeleine Fund, which I did shortly afterwards. He also asked for his reasonable costs.

The settlement was in relation to postings which Edward Smethurst said were 'defamatory'. I had already ensured that these had been removed from the forum.

After the hearing, there was a discussion between myself, barrister Jacob Dean of 5 Raymond Buildings, and Carter-Ruck Senior Partner Isobel Martorell about around 48 other postings on the forum, by other members here, which Smethurst said were not 'defamatory' of him but were 'disparaging' of him. He didn't want people to see these 'disparaging' postings.

In a genuine attempt to end Smethurst's dispute with me as amicably as possible, I offered, entirely voluntarily, to remove all postings on this forum that he said were 'disparaging' of him. I said: "If you tell me which ones he wants removing, I'll undertake to remove them". This offer was made entirely outside the actual terms of the settlement.

Subsequently, Smethurst together with Carter-Ruck identified these 48 postings, sent me a list, and, with the agreement of the forum-owner, I removed all of these as soon as I could locate them. I thought they would be happy with that. They were, in fact.

In July this year, however, I received Smethurst's Bill of Costs. He claimed a total of £52,713.26 from me.

That was 21 times the amount of the damages. Not enough perhaps to be entered into the Guinness Book of Records as the most disproprtionate claim for costs ever.

But not far short.

I have the right to challenge the Bill of Costs.

As I went through the 45-page document, I noticed claims for costs such as these:

"Ms L Smith, Paralegal, charging rate £200 per hour including VAT, 3 hours on 8 December [day after the hearing] for "Compiling a list of all postings naming the Claimant [Smethurst] from Jill Havern Forum, in light of the Defendant's [voluntary] offer to remove all which are disparaging of Claimant and of his family"

and

"Isobel Hudson, Partner, charging rate £540 per hour including VAT, 1 hour on 8 December [day after the hearing] for 'going through possible postings to ask Defendnat to take down'."

Many such claims such as these were made for further work done by Carter-Ruck over the coming weeks, amounting to nearly £20,000, simply covering the time spent on my voluntarily removing postings that I was under absolutely no obligation to remove.

After considering this, I asked myself: "How can they possibly slap all these charges on me when this was a voluntary offer I made, outside the terms of the agreed settlement?"

I wrote to Carter-Ruck. Initially they tried to claim that my offer was 'all part of the global settlement'.

Of course, they were wrong.

Eventually they conceded that they had no basis whatsoever for adding these costs to the Bill of Costs.

The end results of this attempt to pull the wool over my eyes are as follows:

1. Carter-Ruck have already agreed to a substantial reduction in the Bill of Costs

2. They have agreed to remove any claims for costs relating to my voluntary offer to remove the 'disparaging' postings by others

3. A complaint has been made to the Solicitors Regulation Authority about Edward Smethurst's role in wrongly trying to claim these costs from an unrepresented defendant

4. A complaint has been made to the Solicitors Regulation Authority about Isobel Martorell's role in wrongly trying to claim these costs from an unrepresented defendant, and

5. A complaint is shortly to be made to the Bar Council about barrister Jacob Dean's role in wrongly trying to claim these costs from an unrepresented defendant

6. The costs of entirely re-writing the Bill of Costs will have to be borne by Edward Smethurst and/or Carter-Ruck

7. I am less than impressed with Smethurst taking unfair advantage of my helpful offer. I doubt if I'll be making him any more helpful offers.

AND...

8. I'll be taking an even closer look at the revised Bill of Costs, when it comes.

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by bobbin on 21.10.12 20:03

@Tony Bennett wrote:Here's a little story of how lawyers and their clients try to take advantage of someone who is not legally represented in court.

It concerns Edward Smethurst, Carter-Ruck's newly-married Senior Partner Isobel Martorell (formerly Hudson), and the McCanns' barrister, Jacob Dean, of 5 Raymond Buildings.

Here is a brief sumamry of the key events.

On 7 December 2011, at a hearing before Master McCloud, I accepted an offer from Edward Smethurst to settle his damages claim (for postings placed on this forum by me in May 2011). He asked me to make a payment of £2,500.00 to the Find Madeleine Fund, which I did shortly afterwards. He also asked for his reasonable costs.

The settlement was in relation to postings which Edward Smethurst said were 'defamatory'. I had already ensured that these had been removed from the forum.

After the hearing, there was a discussion between myself, barrister Jacob Dean of 5 Raymond Buildings, and Carter-Ruck Senior Partner Isobel Martorell about around 48 other postings on the forum, by other members here, which Smethurst said were not 'defamatory' of him but were 'disparaging' of him. He didn't want people to see these 'disparaging' postings.

In a genuine attempt to end Smethurst's dispute with me as amicably as possible, I offered, entirely voluntarily, to remove all postings on this forum that he said were 'disparaging' of him. I said: "If you tell me which ones he wants removing, I'll undertake to remove them". This offer was made entirely outside the actual terms of the settlement.

Subsequently, Smethurst together with Carter-Ruck identified these 48 postings, sent me a list, and, with the agreement of the forum-owner, I removed all of these as soon as I could locate them. I thought they would be happy with that. They were, in fact.

In July this year, however, I received Smethurst's Bill of Costs. He claimed a total of £52,713.26 from me.

That was 21 times the amount of the damages. Not enough perhaps to be entered into the Guinness Book of Records as the most disproprtionate claim for costs ever.

But not far short.

I have the right to challenge the Bill of Costs.

As I went through the 45-page document, I noticed claims for costs such as these:

"Ms L Smith, Paralegal, charging rate £200 per hour including VAT, 3 hours on 8 December [day after the hearing] for "Compiling a list of all postings naming the Claimant [Smethurst] from Jill Havern Forum, in light of the Defendant's [voluntary] offer to remove all which are disparaging of Claimant and of his family"

and

"Isobel Hudson, Partner, charging rate £540 per hour including VAT, 1 hour on 8 December [day after the hearing] for 'going through possible postings to ask Defendnat to take down'."

Many such claims such as these were made for further work done by Carter-Ruck over the coming weeks, amounting to nearly £20,000, simply covering the time spent on my voluntarily removing postings that I was under absolutely no obligation to remove.

After considering this, I asked myself: "How can they possibly slap all these charges on me when this was a voluntary offer I made, outside the terms of the agreed settlement?"

I wrote to Carter-Ruck. Initially they tried to claim that my offer was 'all part of the global settlement'.

Of course, they were wrong.

Eventually they conceded that they had no basis whatsoever for adding these costs to the Bill of Costs.

The end results of this attempt to pull the wool over my eyes are as follows:

1. Carter-Ruck have already agreed to a substantial reduction in the Bill of Costs

2. They have agreed to remove any claims for costs relating to my voluntary offer to remove the 'disparaging' postings by others

3. A complaint has been made to the Solicitors Regulation Authority about Edward Smethurst's role in wrongly trying to claim these costs from an unrepresented defendant

4. A complaint has been made to the Solicitors Regulation Authority about Isobel Martorell's role in wrongly trying to claim these costs from an unrepresented defendant, and

5. A complaint is shortly to be made to the Bar Council about barrister Jacob Dean's role in wrongly trying to claim these costs from an unrepresented defendant

6. The costs of entirely re-writing the Bill of Costs will have to be borne by Edward Smethurst and/or Carter-Ruck

7. I am less than impressed with Smethurst taking unfair advantage of my helpful offer. I doubt if I'll be making him any more helpful offers.

AND...

8. I'll be taking an even closer look at the revised Bill of Costs, when it comes.

Tony, thank God you stand strong and don't let them wipe the floor with you.
What despicable creatures these people entities are.

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Guest on 21.10.12 20:14

It's not often I'm lost for words but this is one of those rare occasions!

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Guest on 21.10.12 20:20

My jaw has hit the desk. Jaw dropping, putting it mildly!!!! You offer to make ammends, you offer much more than they asked, and they charge you for it

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Smokeandmirrors on 21.10.12 20:25

Says all we need to know about CR and their "professionalism". Wish I could earn £540 per hour surfing the net looking for things to decide are derogatory. I'd be richer than Bill Gates! Their conduct has been misleading regarding all that legal aid stuff, and now this. Would it constitute attempted fraud, or attempt to obtain funds by deception? They'd better watch themselves or they'll get in trouble with the Law Society.

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Ribisl on 21.10.12 20:34

They really give the legal profession a bad name.
I admire your fighting spirit, Tony. thumbup

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The nasty letters from the lovely Debbie McLaren

Post by Tony Bennett on 21.10.12 20:43

@Smokeandmirrors wrote:Says all we need to know about CR and their "professionalism"...Would it constitute attempted fraud, or attempt to obtain funds by deception?
Probably not, though it's coming close. I'm expecting the Law Society to come down like a ton of bricks on Adam Tudor (he supervises Isobel Martorell) and Isobel Martorell, but we shall see. The Law Society is always concerned when experienced professionals like Isobel Martorell take advantage of their professional knowledge.

It's...well...unprofessional.

They can't blame their cost draughtsman, though. Isobel Martorell knew that I had made this voluntary offer, as she was there outside the court toom when I made it. Yet she blithely signed off this outrageous and false claim.

Back in January, Carter-Ruck sent me a large bundle in error. They said they would hire a courier to collect it from me. I said that I happened to be going to London in a couple of days and would happily bring it in for them, to save them hiring a courier - which I did. I did get a nice 'thank you' though from Isobel Martorell's secretay, the lovely Debbie McLaren. Pity she writes me such nasty letters...

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by pauline on 21.10.12 23:55

£200 ph incl VAT for a paralegal listing postings from this forum.....!

A paralegal is not a qualified solicitor.

I'm looking for a well paid part-time job that will fit in with my family commitments - could do that from home and a couple of hours a week would be all I'd need!

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Angelique on 21.10.12 23:57

Tony

What an awful to do - and well done for standing your ground. I am absolutely disgusted that CR would try this sort of thing. Though I have to say it - are we surprised!


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Louise Smith

Post by Tony Bennett on 22.10.12 1:12

@pauline wrote:£200 ph incl VAT for a paralegal listing postings from this forum.....!

A paralegal is not a qualified solicitor.

I'm looking for a well paid part-time job that will fit in with my family commitments - could do that from home and a couple of hours a week would be all I'd need!
Good evening Pauline, a few brief points by way of reply.

The paralegal doesn't earn that much of course. Her charging rate will cover the cost of all the firm's overheads, rent, secretarial services, equipment, law boooks, Adam Tudor's new Merc, etc. She will probably be earning less than a fifth of that per hour.

Ms L Smith is Louise Smith, and if I lose this case, I may have to pay for another of her actions.

Back in mid-2011, when the McCanns, Edward Smethurst and Brian Kennedy got their heads together in June and all plotted to send me legal letters within a week of each other at the beginning of August, Adam Tudor sent her on a little errand: "Go and buy 'The Madeleine McCann Case Files, Volume 1', from The Madeleine Foundation".

She did. She paid MF £4 via PayPal, and got her book.

Among the 2,000 pages of documents delivered by limousine to my door on 1 December was a solemnly-sworn Affidavit from Ms Louise Smith which said, in terms: "I bought the MF book via PayPal".

This publication by me and MF of this book, which is purely and simply a selection from the Portuguese Police Files, is now paraded before the High Court as a 'grave and serious libel and breach of undertaking' which justifies me being incarcerated in a British jail for a period.

The publication by me of the list of 48 questions that Dr Kate McCann refused to answer is also regarded as another grave libel and breach of undertaking by me, even though this list is all over the internet, and on the websites of most British newspapers and the BBC.

A few months ago, after scoring yet another goal for Manchester City, 'Super' Mario Balotelli unfurled his football shirt to reveal another T-shirt underneath.

It bore the words: 'Why Always Me?'

Sometimes I feel just the same.



P.S. 'The Madeleine McCann Case Files, Volume 1' is still available for sale on the MF website. But maybe not for much longer

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Smokeandmirrors on 22.10.12 7:39

Surely the 48 questions cannot constitute libel if they are a) in the public domain and b) fact, published by a police force?
Anything the courts cleared for publication cannot be libellous? How can they reasonably claim that?

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by pauline on 22.10.12 9:42

@Tony Bennett wrote:
@pauline wrote:£200 ph incl VAT for a paralegal listing postings from this forum.....!

A paralegal is not a qualified solicitor.

I'm looking for a well paid part-time job that will fit in with my family commitments - could do that from home and a couple of hours a week would be all I'd need!
Good evening Pauline, a few brief points by way of reply.

The paralegal doesn't earn that much of course. Her charging rate will cover the cost of all the firm's overheads, rent, secretarial services, equipment, law boooks, Adam Tudor's new Merc, etc. She will probably be earning less than a fifth of that per hour.

Ms L Smith is Louise Smith, and if I lose this case, I may have to pay for another of her actions.

Back in mid-2011, when the McCanns, Edward Smethurst and Brian Kennedy got their heads together in June and all plotted to send me legal letters within a week of each other at the beginning of August, Adam Tudor sent her on a little errand: "Go and buy 'The Madeleine McCann Case Files, Volume 1', from The Madeleine Foundation".

She did. She paid MF £4 via PayPal, and got her book.

Among the 2,000 pages of documents delivered by limousine to my door on 1 December was a solemnly-sworn Affidavit from Ms Louise Smith which said, in terms: "I bought the MF book via PayPal".

This publication by me and MF of this book, which is purely and simply a selection from the Portuguese Police Files, is now paraded before the High Court as a 'grave and serious libel and breach of undertaking' which justifies me being incarcerated in a British jail for a period.

The publication by me of the list of 48 questions that Dr Kate McCann refused to answer is also regarded as another grave libel and breach of undertaking by me, even though this list is all over the internet, and on the websites of most British newspapers and the BBC.

A few months ago, after scoring yet another goal for Manchester City, 'Super' Mario Balotelli unfurled his football shirt to reveal another T-shirt underneath.

It bore the words: 'Why Always Me?'

Sometimes I feel just the same.



P.S. 'The Madeleine McCann Case Files, Volume 1' is still available for sale on the MF website. But maybe not for much longer

Tony, I think you should review that post unless you have hard evidence that Adam Tudor has a new merc and that it is a business car - otherwise you could face another legal action saying you have defamed him by suggesting that he would be so unprofessional as to charge an expensive personal asset to yourself!

A legal mate in London has just emailed me to say paralegal salaries in London would in general be from £23,000 - £30,000 pa and if a legal firm uses an agency to get a paralegal to take on a project rates are approx £13-£16 ph. Now as you say a law firm has to add to the actual costs to allow for their overheads and a profit margin, but its a long way from £13 ph to £200 ph incl VAT!!!!!!

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Tony Bennett on 22.10.12 10:29

@Smokeandmirrors wrote:Surely the 48 questions cannot constitute libel if they are a) in the public domain and b) fact, published by a police force?
Anything the courts cleared for publication cannot be libellous? How can they reasonably claim that?
I think (though I am not sure) that the reasoning of the McCanns and their lawyers is something like this:

* We got Bennett in 2009. He promised not to suggest we were to be suspected of X, Y and Z.

* By publishing the list of 48 unanswered questions, he's broken his promise and should be jailed.

* By publishing the report of Tavares de Almeida, he's broken his promise and should be jailed.

* By publishing the full report of Martin Grime, he's broken his promise and should be jailed.

* By publising a selection of Jane Tanner's ramblings in 'The Madeleine McCann Case Files, Volume 1', which make her evidence about the abductor look utterly threadbare, he's broken his promise and should be jailed.

And so on. (All of the above actions are indeed cited by the McCanns in their committal papers, by the way).

Now, the Court might say: 'Yes, Mr Bennett, by publishing any and all of the above, you have broken your undertaking.

But, let's think about this.

What, then, would the Court in effect be saying?

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by aiyoyo on 22.10.12 11:31

@pauline wrote:
@Tony Bennett wrote:
@pauline wrote:£200 ph incl VAT for a paralegal listing postings from this forum.....!

A paralegal is not a qualified solicitor.

I'm looking for a well paid part-time job that will fit in with my family commitments - could do that from home and a couple of hours a week would be all I'd need!
Good evening Pauline, a few brief points by way of reply.

The paralegal doesn't earn that much of course. Her charging rate will cover the cost of all the firm's overheads, rent, secretarial services, equipment, law boooks, Adam Tudor's new Merc, etc. She will probably be earning less than a fifth of that per hour.

Ms L Smith is Louise Smith, and if I lose this case, I may have to pay for another of her actions.

Back in mid-2011, when the McCanns, Edward Smethurst and Brian Kennedy got their heads together in June and all plotted to send me legal letters within a week of each other at the beginning of August, Adam Tudor sent her on a little errand: "Go and buy 'The Madeleine McCann Case Files, Volume 1', from The Madeleine Foundation".

She did. She paid MF £4 via PayPal, and got her book.

Among the 2,000 pages of documents delivered by limousine to my door on 1 December was a solemnly-sworn Affidavit from Ms Louise Smith which said, in terms: "I bought the MF book via PayPal".

This publication by me and MF of this book, which is purely and simply a selection from the Portuguese Police Files, is now paraded before the High Court as a 'grave and serious libel and breach of undertaking' which justifies me being incarcerated in a British jail for a period.

The publication by me of the list of 48 questions that Dr Kate McCann refused to answer is also regarded as another grave libel and breach of undertaking by me, even though this list is all over the internet, and on the websites of most British newspapers and the BBC.

A few months ago, after scoring yet another goal for Manchester City, 'Super' Mario Balotelli unfurled his football shirt to reveal another T-shirt underneath.

It bore the words: 'Why Always Me?'

Sometimes I feel just the same.



P.S. 'The Madeleine McCann Case Files, Volume 1' is still available for sale on the MF website. But maybe not for much longer

Tony, I think you should review that post unless you have hard evidence that Adam Tudor has a new merc and that it is a business car - otherwise you could face another legal action saying you have defamed him by suggesting that he would be so unprofessional as to charge an expensive personal asset to yourself!

A legal mate in London has just emailed me to say paralegal salaries in London would in general be from £23,000 - £30,000 pa and if a legal firm uses an agency to get a paralegal to take on a project rates are approx £13-£16 ph. Now as you say a law firm has to add to the actual costs to allow for their overheads and a profit margin, but its a long way from £13 ph to £200 ph incl VAT!!!!!!

Well, likely he was seen arriving in the Merc, company car or otherwise is incidental.
Remember 2 jags Prescott...excessive extravaganza.
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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Guest on 22.10.12 11:36

@Tony Bennett wrote:[...]
Now, the Court might say: 'Yes, Mr Bennett, by publishing any and all of the above, you have broken your undertaking.

But, let's think about this.

What, then, would the Court in effect be saying?
***
Excellent reasoning. If everything originates from published police files ... Yep ;-)

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Guest on 22.10.12 17:58

It might seem like a dumb sort of question but I have a valid reason for asking it.

Do CR indicate which actual matter is considered libellous ie. the sentences, paragraphs or pages.

Or is that extra?

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Tony Bennett on 22.10.12 18:14

Finn wrote:It might seem like a dumb sort of question but I have a valid reason for asking it.

Do CR indicate which actual matter is considered libellous ie. the sentences, paragraphs or pages.

Or is that extra?
Are we talking about the Smethurst action against me, or the McCanns' action against me?

In the Smethurst action, he identified precisely which words of mine that he claimed were defamatory of him, and explained why (in his view) he thought the words were, in the words of the Defamation Act, capable of bearing a defamatory meaning. The mere fact, for example, of mentioning that his Facebook Friend James Halley was a member of the FB groups on 'Bestiality' and 'Fisting' was not in itself defamatory. Nor for example the fact that one of his other FB Friends, Ben Murphy, worked for 'Television x', a notorious TV porn channel. These are mere facts.

In the McCann action, because I agreed to undertakings in advance of - and to prevent - the McCanns embarking on a full-blown libel action, the McCanns never set down in an formal document exactly what words of mine (in '60 Reasons' and '10 Reasons' for example) were defamatory. This (if I have interpreted him correctly), was one of Mr Justice Tugendhat's concerns both at the February and in the more recent October hearings.

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by kinell on 22.10.12 18:34

Mr Bennett, if you do not win this case against the McCanns based on everything you divulge to us then I fear for this country, I really do. I am lost for words by how these people are trying to cripple you. You deserve a knighthood for your efforts to find the truth about what happened to Madeleine McCann and shame on her parents and those associated with them for what they are doing to you. You have truth on your side and they have not. Best wishes to you Mr Bennett.

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Kind

Post by Tony Bennett on 22.10.12 18:38

@kinell wrote:Mr Bennett, if you do not win this case against the McCanns based on everything you divulge to us then I fear for this country, I really do. I am lost for words by how these people are trying to cripple you. You deserve a knighthood for your efforts to find the truth about what happened to Madeleine McCann and shame on her parents and those associated with them for what they are doing to you. You have truth on your side and they have not. Best wishes to you Mr Bennett.
That is really very kind of you indeed. I have made a lot of enemies over this and many people think this is just a vile witch-hunt against entirely innocent, vulnerable parents. A great many people do not accept that this is the genuine pursuit of the truth about what really happened to Madeleine McCann. Thank you again

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Guest on 22.10.12 22:18

@Tony Bennett wrote:
@kinell wrote:Mr Bennett, if you do not win this case against the McCanns based on everything you divulge to us then I fear for this country, I really do. I am lost for words by how these people are trying to cripple you. You deserve a knighthood for your efforts to find the truth about what happened to Madeleine McCann and shame on her parents and those associated with them for what they are doing to you. You have truth on your side and they have not. Best wishes to you Mr Bennett.
That is really very kind of you indeed. I have made a lot of enemies over this and many people think this is just a vile witch-hunt against entirely innocent, vulnerable parents. A great many people do not accept that this is the genuine pursuit of the truth about what really happened to Madeleine McCann. Thank you again
***
I think I know some of your "enemies" and I judge it to be a clash of strong minds ... Oh well. You're going to walk the mile and IMO stand very good chances of convincing judge and jury, that you are indeed out to get the truth based on facts, which cannot be refuted and thus cannot be labelled libel ;-)

ETA I'll PM you this week. Am still in a fight with French taxes and social security, all of them incompetent , yet dangerous and expensive idiots. Grrrrrr

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by Guest on 22.10.12 22:19

I cannot think of anybody less deserving of being called "innocent" and "vulnerable" than the McCanns!

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by aiyoyo on 23.10.12 3:41

As I went through the 45-page document, I noticed claims for costs such as these:

I am gobsmacked that they sent a 45-page itemised invoice. So much time went into coming up with such a massive bill!
Blimney, don't the lawyers have better and more productive things to do with their time to earn their money, than extracting it from paying party using such a mundane and idle (hence questionable integrity) way by simply spending hours working on preparing a massive bill and in the process building up the size of their bill for the paying party.

I am a lost for words.



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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by bobbin on 23.10.12 10:16

@aiyoyo wrote:
As I went through the 45-page document, I noticed claims for costs such as these:

I am gobsmacked that they sent a 45-page itemised invoice. So much time went into coming up with such a massive bill!
Blimney, don't the lawyers have better and more productive things to do with their time to earn their money, than extracting it from paying party using such a mundane and idle (hence questionable integrity) way by simply spending hours working on preparing a massive bill and in the process building up the size of their bill for the paying party.

I am a lost for words.



It's all done to intimidate someone who is causing them and their clients a 'very serious concern'.
The idea being that to swamp a person with paper-work that they have to go through, to check each word, each line, each legal implication, each nuance, knowing that if they miss something important it will leap out at them and hit them in the back of the neck at some later date.
From a professional point of view, the CR bunch and their clients are behaving in a despicable way.
Equality of arms isn't even in the picture.
But I do think that Judge Tugendhat is above all of this sort of behaviour.
He has shown himself to be a one-off pretty amazing judge so far, so I hope more than anything that he will stay the judge and not be ousted by some skull-duggery on the part of CR and clients, at the last minute.
He will see the Smethurst, McCann, CR stuff for what it is. We can see it too. It's as clear as daylight.

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by aiyoyo on 23.10.12 10:36

@bobbin wrote:
@aiyoyo wrote:
As I went through the 45-page document, I noticed claims for costs such as these:

I am gobsmacked that they sent a 45-page itemised invoice. So much time went into coming up with such a massive bill!
Blimney, don't the lawyers have better and more productive things to do with their time to earn their money, than extracting it from paying party using such a mundane and idle (hence questionable integrity) way by simply spending hours working on preparing a massive bill and in the process building up the size of their bill for the paying party.

I am a lost for words.



It's all done to intimidate someone who is causing them and their clients a 'very serious concern'.
The idea being that to swamp a person with paper-work that they have to go through, to check each word, each line, each legal implication, each nuance, knowing that if they miss something important it will leap out at them and hit them in the back of the neck at some later date.
From a professional point of view, the CR bunch and their clients are behaving in a despicable way.
Equality of arms isn't even in the picture.
But I do think that Judge Tugendhat is above all of this sort of behaviour.
He has shown himself to be a one-off pretty amazing judge so far, so I hope more than anything that he will stay the judge and not be ousted by some skull-duggery on the part of CR and clients, at the last minute.
He will see the Smethurst, McCann, CR stuff for what it is. We can see it too. It's as clear as daylight.

Ya? But we are not talking innnudating TB with litigation document which purpose is obvious but pages and pages of ITEMISED BILL.
Someone has to keep a record of who spend time doing what on the case, liaise back and forth with the few lawyers involved in working on the case to collect the info, collate the info, compile it into a massive invoice with minute detail of how many hours spent on doing what, court attendance fee, photocopied cost must be horrendous, then the courier service etc etc etc all listed in details to come up with the 10-mile (45-page) long bill, and I bet the cost of the staff engineering this bill (probably listed as misc) is passed onto TB.

It is clear as day from night that this lot of scammers is out to wipe out a vulnerable old man in order to cripple his spirit in the hope to stop his voice.

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Re: THE SMETHURST FILES - 2. An attempt to extract money from an unrepresented litigant

Post by roy rovers on 23.10.12 10:51

They will have automated office management software that keeps track of timesheets / billing and spews out 45 fully costed pages without much human input.

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