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A COMPENDIUM OF MCCANN-RELATED LIBEL ACTIONS Mm11

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A COMPENDIUM OF MCCANN-RELATED LIBEL ACTIONS

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Post by Tony Bennett on Fri 17 Jun 2011 - 17:14

McCann Team’s libel actions: the story so far:

Note: this article will be updated and amended in blue. Please see SIX UPDATES SO FAR, 27 July 2011; 9, 21 and 26 August 2011, on 12 September 2011, and on 5 December 2011


A provisional compendium of all the libel actions and threatened actions by the McCanns and their friends and associates, showing who they’ve sued or attempted to sue, and with what result.

On a conservative estimate, lawyers in this case, both lawyers for the claimants and lawyers for the defendants, have made around £5 million (maybe much more) as a result of Madeleine's disappearance. What a good job that many children have chipped in with their weekly pocket money and many pensioners sent their weekly pensions to the McCanns to help this most worthy of causes.

[Note, this is a provisional compendium, some details may be inaccurate and there may be omissions. If corrections and omissions are posted here, I will update the OP as we go along].

The entries below show:

· Who took action

· Against whom

· Why

· When,

· With what result, and

· What lawyer was used.

Some references/sources are supplied


McCanns v Tal & Qual

1. Who took action? The McCanns.

Against whom? Portuguese tabloid Tal & Qual.

Why? They said they were libelled.

When? 31 August 2007.

Result? McCanns had to abandon their legal action because the newspaper went out of business throiugh falling sales.

Lawyer used: Carlos Pinto de Abreu.

Ref: Carlos Pinto de Abreu quoted as saying: “The press has engaged in a horrific exercise in scandal-mongering, replete with rumours and lurid commentaries...to sell more TV time and newspaper space to advertisers”. Tal * Qual stood by their story; the journalist who wrote the article, Catarina Vaz Guerreiro, said: “I can't reveal my source, but I have complete trust in them. I strongly believe that the person that gave us this information is telling the truth”.


McCanns v 24Horas

2. Who took action? The McCanns.

Against whom? Newspaper, 24Horas.

Why? Various ‘smears’ against the McCanns including claims that Dr Gerald McCann was not Madeleine’s father.

When? October 2007

Result? Action threatened but not begun.

Ref: 12 October 2007, Daily Mail: “Kate and Gerry McCann are planning to sue a Portuguese newspaper in the British libel courts, the Evening Standard can reveal. The McCanns are considering the action against Lisbon-based 24 Horas after becoming increasingly angered by a series of smears. The McCanns' spokesman Clarence Mitchell said today: ‘24 Horas is running an absolutely despicable campaign and Kate and Gerry are not afraid to take legal action’.They can bring the action here because 24 Horas has a website available for download in the UK. The damages could be so large, it has been suggested, it could put the newspaper out of business”.

Lawyer used: Carlos Pinto de Abreu.


Justine McGuiness v Mirror Group Newspapers

3. Who took action? Justine McGuiness, former reputation manager for the McCanns.

Against whom? The People/Mirror Group Newspapers.

Why? An article in The People, October 2007, suggesting she’d overclaimed expenses by £20,000.

When? Late 2007.

Result? Settled out of court for £5,000 damages. The lawyers (see below) claimed £78,000 costs under: ‘No Win, No Fee’. Ms McGuiness had the money paid into a charity.

Lawyer used: Amber Melville-Brown of Withers LLP


McCanns v Media

4. Who took action? The McCanns.

Against whom? Express Newspapers, other TV and media outlets

Why? Claims they were libelled by suggestions they were somehow involved in Madeleine’s disappearance

When? Claim made early 2008?

Result? £550,000 gained, settled out of court, front-page apoloigis prineyed Wednesday 19 March 2008 amd Sunday 23 March

Lawyer used: Carter Ruck

Ref: The Guardian’s Roy Greenslade said: “It is unprecedented for four major newspapers to offer front-page apologies, but it is more than warranted given that the papers had committed a substantial libel that ‘shamed the entire British press’.”


Murat v Media

5. Who took action? Robert Murat

Against whom? Express Newspapers titles the Daily Express, Sunday Express and Daily Star; Associated’s Daily Mail, London Evening Standard and Metro; MGN's Daily Mirror, Sunday Mirror and Daily Record; and News International’s Sun and News of the World.

Why? Claims he was libelled by suggestions in dozens of newspaper articles that he was somehow involved in Madeleine’s disappearance

When? Claim made early 2008?

Result? The Scotsman apologised to Murat 15 May, paying no damages, £600,000 gained from the other newspapers on 18 July 2008, settled out of court.

Lawyer used: Louis Charalambous of Simons Muirhead & Burton.


Michaela Walczuk & Sergei Malinka v Media

6. Who took action? Michaela Walczuk (girlfriend, now wife of Murat) and Sergei Malinka

Against whom? Express Newspapers titles the Daily Express, Sunday Express and Daily Star; Associated's Daily Mail, London Evening Standard and Metro; MGN's Daily Mirror, Sunday Mirror and Daily Record; and News of the World

Why? They claim they were libelled by suggestions in newspaper articles that they were somehow involved in Madeleine’s disappearance

When? Claim made early 2008?

Result? Reputedly £100,000 gained for each of them on 18 July 2008, settled out of court.

Lawyer used: Louis Charalambous of Simons Muirhead & Burton.


Tapas 7 v Media

7. Who took action? The ‘Tapas 7’.

Against whom? Express Newspapers and several other news groups.

Why? Claims they were collectively libelled by suggestions they were somehow involved in Madeleine’s disappearance.

When? Claim made early 2008?

Result? £375,000 gained in total (over £53,500 each).

Lawyer used: Carter Ruck

Ref: Express Newspapers said at the time in an apology: “In articles…we suggested that the holiday companions of Kate and Gerry McCann might have covered up the true facts concerning Madeleine McCann's disappearance and/or misled the authorities investigating her disappearance. We also reported speculation that…Dr Russell O'Brien was suspected of involvement with Madeleine's abduction. We now accept that these suggestions should never have been made and were completely untrue…”


Murat v BSkyB

8. Who took action? Robert Murat

Against whom? BskyB.

Why? Claims they accused him of involvement in Madeleine’s disappearance.

When? During 2008?

Result? Undisclosed damages, settled out of court 14 November 2008.

Lawyer used: Louis Charalambous of Simons Muirhead & Burton.


McCanns v Paulo Reis, Portuguese journalist

9. Who took action? The McCanns

Against whom? Paulo Reis, a Portuguese journalist.

Why? Claims they were libelled in a series of articles by Reis in 2007 & 2008

When? Claim made summery 2008?

Result? Paulo Reis mentioned his libel letter from the McCanns in an article dated Ocober 2008; he had already taken a break from writing about Madeleine McCann in order to concentrate on writing about other stories. It is not known if he withdrew any of his articles about Madeleine; probably not.

Lawyers used: Carter Ruck.

Ref:
http://gazetadigitalmadeleinecase.blogspot.com/2008/10/news-after-long-absence.html He wrote: "I received a letter from Carter-Ruck, threatening to take me to court, if I don't stop immediately writing about the case - something I have no intention to do"


McCanns v Goncalo Amaral and TVI

10. Who took action? The McCanns.

Against whom? Goncalo Amaral and Portuguese TV station TVI .

Why? Claims they were libelled by suggestions they were somehow involved in Madeleine’s disappearance

When? Libel action was threatened in July 2008 when Mr Amaral published his book but it didn’t get under way until the McCanns served a writ in June or July 2009

Result? Complex! The main events so far:

· Sep 2009 Book banned, TV1 documentary banned, books impounded

· Dec 2009/Jan/Feb 2010 Hearing of Amaral’s appeal against the book ban; appeal failed

· Oct 2010 Portuguese Appeal Court upholds Amaral’s appeal; book unbanned

· Mar 2011 Portuguese Supreme Court hears appeal by McCanns against book unbanning’ appeal fails, Amaral’s book can be sold.

McCanns say they will appeal still further.

Lawyer used: Isobel Duarte.


McCanns v T Bennett & D Butler

11. Who took action? The McCanns.

Against whom? Tony Bennett & Debbie Butler

Why? Claims they were libelled in a book, a leaflet and on a website by suggestions they were somehow involved in Madeleine’s disappearance

When? 27 August 2009

Result? Bennett and Butler agreed not to distribute ’60 Reasons’ book and ’10

Reasons’ leaflet and not to libel the McCanns; Bennett required to pay £400 Court costs.

Lawyer used: Carter Ruck.


B & K Kennedy v T Bennett

12. Who took action? Brian Kennedy, main backer of the McCanns and his son Patrick Kennedy.

Against whom? Brian Kennedy took action against Tony Bennett.

Why? Claims he was libelled in internet articles on the 3As website.

When? 28 August 2009

Result? The offending articles were no longer available because 3As was taken offline; Bennett agreed not to libel Kennedy.

Lawyer used: Carter Ruck.


McCanns v Pamalam

13. Who took action? The McCanns

Against whom? Pamalam, owner of ‘gerrymccannsblogs’ website, and her hosters.

When? 2009?

Why? Claims that Dr Gerald McCann’s blogs were copyright and that there was libellous content on the blog.

Result: Unsuccessful. Pamalam retained the entries complained of as her hosters required the McCanns’ lawyers to obtain a Court Order. The lawyers did not apply for one.

Lawyer used: Carter Ruck.


McCanns v Madeleine Foundation

14. Who took action? The McCanns.

Against whom? The Madeleine Foundation

Why? Claims the McCanns were libelled by an article by Barbara Nottage in which she said the abduction could not have happened in the claimed time slot of 3-4 minutes

When? January 2010.

Result: Half of the article removed.

Lawyer used: Carter Ruck.


McCanns v Madeleine Foundation

15. Who took action? The McCanns.

Against whom? The Madeleine Foundation.

Why? Claims that a leaflet about Goncalo Amaral was libellous

When? February 2010.

Result: Distribution of the leaflet suspended for four months.

Lawyer used: Carter Ruck.


Marcos Aragao Correia v Madeleine Foundation

16. Who took action? Marcos Aragao Corriea, Portuguese lawyers used by the McCanns in conjunction with metodo 3 andf who brought criminal prosectutiosgaaon Goncalo Amaral.

Against whim? The Madeleine Foundation.

Why: Claimed he had been defined by an article on The Madeleine Foundation

When? April 2010

Result: Correia took no further action after Madeleine Foundation replied defending content of its article.

Lawyer used: Himself.


McCanns & Jon Corner v McCann Exposure & Wordpress

17. Who took action? The McCanns and Jon Corner.

Against whom? Owners of the ‘McCann Exposure’ blog and hosters WordPress

Why? Claims the blog breached copyright and was libellous

When? 2 June 2011

Result: Copyright photos removed and some changes made to the blog’s content.

Lawyer used: Carter Ruck.


Brian Kennedy v McCann Exposure & Wordpress

18. Who took action? Brian Kennedy

Against whom? Owners of the ‘McCann Exposure’ blog and hosters WordPress

Why? Claims the blog libelled him When? 3 June 2011

Result: Some changes made to the blog’s content.

Lawyer used: Carter Ruck.


McCanns v Paulo Sargento, Hernâni Carvalho and Manuel Luis Goucha and TVI

19. Who took action? The McCanns.

Against whom? Three Portuguese citizens: Paulo Sargento, Hernâni Carvalho and Manuel Luis Goucha and Portuguese TV station TVI.

Why? Claims they libelled the McCanns in a TV discussion

When? 15 June 2011

Result: Action only just begun.

Lawyer used: Isobel Duarte.

Ref: Quote from article: “Three personalities of the small screen in Portugal began to be interviewed yesterday, Wednesday, after they were declared ‘arguidos’ - suspects, in a complaint of criminal libel. The complaint cites the contribution of the three ‘arguidos’ during the broadcast of a talk-show where details of the Portuguese police investigation of Madeleine McCann were discussed”.


McCanns v Pat Brown, Criminal Profiler

20. Who took action? The McCanns

Against whom? Pat Brown, self-styled 'Crimnal profiler' inm the U.S.A.

Why? Claims her new e-book, 'Profiling the Disappearance of Madeleine McCann', libelled them


When? mid-July 2011

Result: Amazon have stopped listing her book, claiming that the McCanns have alleged that her book is defamatory and that, as they haven't the resources to say whether a book is libellous or not, they're removing it from sale. Pat Brown is suing for 'tortious interference with business' because the McCanns caused her book to be withdrawn from sale on Amazon.

Lawyer used: Carter Ruck.


Edward Smethurst (McCanns' Co-ordinating lawyer) v Tony Bennett

21. Who took action? Edward Smethurst

Against whom? Tony Bennett

Why? Claims that three threads on 'Complete Mystery of Madeleine McCann' libelled him, especially references to comments made by some of his 'Facebook friends'.


When? Libel writ in the High Court issued 9 Augsut 2011

Result: Smethurst obtained a secrecy order on 9 August 2011 from Master Eyre, forbidding disclosure of Court documents to third parties. Detailed Particulars of Claim have not yet been filed by Smethurst. The claim is for damages 'not exceeding £100,000'. Preliminary hearing on 7 December 2011

Lawyer used: Isabel Hudson at Carter-Ruck.



McCanns v Tony Bennett

22. Who took action? The McCanns

Against whom? Tony Bennett

Why? They claim that Tony Bennett has breached his undertaking not to accuse the McCanns of any involvement in the disappearance of their daughter and is therefore guilty of contempt of court. They have said they will shortly issue contempt proceedings. They also demanded the remove of around 50 articles and postings by him.

When? Letter written 12 Augsut 2011.

Result: Contempt proceedings served on Tony Bennett when a large cardboard box was delivered to him by limousine on 1 December 2011. . The articles and postings to which the McCanns objected have been removed.

Lawyer used: Isabel Hudson at Carter-Ruck.


Brian Kennedy v Tony Bennett

23. Who took action? Brian Kennedy


Against whom? Tony Bennett

Why? Claims that ten articles on The Madeleine Foundation website libelled him.

When? Libel letter sent 2 September 2011

Result: Matter settled as follows: (1) Tony Benentt apologised for libelling Brian Kennedy. Tony Bennett agreed to withdraw, and not re-publish, a number of articles about Brian Kennedy on the Madeleine Foundation website. Brian Kennedy asked for costs but Tony Bennett successfully refused to pay them. No other payment was made by Tony Benentt to settle this action.

Lawyers used: Adam Tudor and Isabel Hudson at Carter-Ruck.


Steve May (Business associate of the McCanns' 'co-ordinating lawyer', Edward Smethurst) v Jill Havern

24. Who took action? Steve May

Against whom? Jill Havern

Why? Claims that a thread on the 'Complete Mystery of Madeleine McCann forum' were libellous of him.

When? Libel letter sent October 2011

Result: Jill Havern removed the thread in question but did not reply to the letter. There was no further action.

Lawyers used: Isabel Hudson at Carter-Ruck.






OTHER LEGAL ACTIONS

In September 2009, Bindmans LLP, Solicitors for Henri E___, who worked or still works for the security services, requested several websites including Joana Morais’ blog and The Madeleine Foundation website us to remove what they alleged to be ‘confidential information’ in observance of a Category 5 ‘D Notice’. He had been named in an article by Mark Hollingsworth in the Evening Standard newspaper. Most websites/blogs complied with the request by removing his name from their sites.

In 2010 the McCanns' lawyer Isabel Duarte made a complaint that Gonçalo Amaral had 'giving false statements about his financial affairs (assets and income) to the Social Security Department in order to obtain legal support. On 15 April the Public Ministry in Portimão rejected her complaint on behalf of the McCanns. The Public Ministry said there was no evidence that Gonçalo Amaral had commited any crime. Afterwards [in Correio da Manhã, April 16, 2011, page 14, paper edition:
http://joana-morais.blogspot.com/2011/04/maddie-case-mccanns-lose-another-legal.html , Gonçalo Amaral was quoted as saying: "This is another defeat for the McCann couple. It is another setback in their attempts to destroy me by legal action". [Thanks to 'candyfloss' for the extra information].



Compiled by T Bennett, 17 June 2011
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Post by LittleMissMolly on Fri 17 Jun 2011 - 18:07

Thanks for this Tony A COMPENDIUM OF MCCANN-RELATED LIBEL ACTIONS 636506

Now ... could someone please arrange for the mainstream media to accuse me of having something to do with Madeleine's disappearance? As gravy trains go it beats the lottery hands down!

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Post by Guest on Fri 17 Jun 2011 - 18:52

Quite a list Tony, there is this one too about Mr Amaral .................

Maddie Case: McCanns lose another legal complaint

16 April 2011 | Posted by Joana Morais Leave a Comment




Maddie Case: McCanns Lose

The Public Ministry of Portimão rejected a complaint made by Isabel Duarte, the lawyer for the McCann couple, which accused Gonçalo Amaral of giving false statements to the Social Security in order to obtain legal support. The Public Ministry considers that Gonçalo Amaral did not commit any crime.

“ This is another defeat for the McCann couple. It is another setback in their attempts to destroy me civilly [i.e. civil action].”

in Correio da Manhã, April 16, 2011, page 14, paper edition (with thanks to Caroline)

http://joana-morais.blogspot.com/2011/04/maddie-case-mccanns-lose-another-legal.html

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Post by Tony Bennett on Fri 17 Jun 2011 - 19:17

candyfloss wrote:Quite a list Tony, there is this one too about Mr Amaral...

Maddie Case: McCanns lose another legal complaint

The Public Ministry of Portimão rejected a complaint made by Isabel Duarte, the lawyer for the McCann couple, which accused Gonçalo Amaral of giving false statements to the Social Security in order to obtain legal support. The Public Ministry considers that Gonçalo Amaral did not commit any crime.

“This is another defeat for the McCann couple. It is another setback in their attempts to destroy me civilly [i.e. civil action].” - in Correio da Manhã, April 16, 2011, page 14, paper edition
Many thanks, it's not actually a libel action, but I've added this under the heading "Other Legal Actions" as it was a significant extra piece of litigation that Amaral had to cope with.
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Post by Gillyspot on Sat 18 Jun 2011 - 21:38

Telegraph Article Madeleine McCann 'died from overdose'

An article was published in September 2007 by the telegraph stating that "Madeleine McCann died from an overdose of sleeping tablets", reports in a French newspaper claimed yesterday"

Guilhem Battut, an investigative reporter for the French tabloid France Soir, said Portuguese police had given prosecutors a file detailing how they thought Madeleine had died."

Link to the article below and importantly it is STILL on the Telegraph website:

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/1563090/Madeleine-McCann-died-from-overdose.html

Question is why havent the Mccanns sued the Telegraph or France Soir regarding this? - is is because they can't as it just may be true?
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Post by Guest on Sat 18 Jun 2011 - 21:41

Don't speak too soon honeybunch according to this.....

candyfloss wrote:Thursday , June 16th

Maddie's parents sue Goucha, Sergeant and Hernani Carvalho


Defendants: Luis Manuel Goucha Paul Sergeant and Hernani Carvalho
Luis Manuel Goucha Paul Sergeant and Hernani Carvalho started yesterday, Wednesday, to be made defendants in a case in defamation brought by Kate and Gerry McCann.
The indictment, which was presented by the couple's lawyer in Portugal, is also aimed at the management of TVI. It was in a program presented on TVI that the alleged crime has occurred.
Asked the forensic expert and psychologist Paul Sergeant - yesterday accused constituted - has confirmed the information and stressed "that yesterday but did not provide any statements that weighs responding during the process because he knows the elements that can lead to the reopening of the investigation into the disappearance of Madeleine McCann . "
Curious detail, the process is not under judicial secrecy.
Source close to Maddie's parents confirmed the complaint and added "that other processes can still occur."

http://duartelevy.eu/2011/06/16/pais-de-maddie-processam-goucha-sargento-e-hernani-carvalho/

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Post by Guest on Sat 18 Jun 2011 - 22:28

I wonder are they going to sue the BBC for saying that Madeleine died of a broken neck, to my knowledge that has never been retracted, normally when the BBC get something wrong they would apologise and say they made a mistake, that never seemed to happen.
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Post by Gillyspot on Sat 18 Jun 2011 - 22:49

Cherry wrote:I wonder are they going to sue the BBC for saying that Madeleine died of a broken neck, to my knowledge that has never been retracted, normally when the BBC get something wrong they would apologise and say they made a mistake, that never seemed to happen.

I rememberer the BBC mentioning but it is not on their website (and I have just searched it and not found it) so perhaps they agreed with the Mccanns lawyers to remove it as there are still at least 100 other articles on there but not that one.

As regards the Telegraph / France Soir article the BBC only mention France Soir on it, here:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/6995980.stm
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Post by Guest on Sun 19 Jun 2011 - 0:56

Hi honeybunch, it was mentioned in two news reports by the BBC, then never mentioned again,
but rather odd they made no retraction or apology for giving out wrong information (unless, of course, the info wasnt wrong which would account for the fact there was no retraction and apology that I know of).
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Post by littlepixie on Sun 19 Jun 2011 - 1:29

Could you or I or anyone else afford to sue all of these people? How many times in our lifetime have we had people say someting about us we didnt like or we would rather was not discussed. Would we run to Court, our cheque books in our hands and demand we be compensated because so and so said something we didnt like or was too close to the bone or was something we didnt want anyone else to know? Could the McCanns have done this before they benefited from donations from old people, school children and other kind-hearted people who wanted to help them and help Madeleine? At one time they couldn't afford to pay their own mortgage yet now they can afford to sue anyone who doesn't believe what they say.
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Post by ufercoffy on Sun 19 Jun 2011 - 10:46

@littlepixie wrote:Could you or I or anyone else afford to sue all of these people? How many times in our lifetime have we had people say someting about us we didnt like or we would rather was not discussed. Would we run to Court, our cheque books in our hands and demand we be compensated because so and so said something we didnt like or was too close to the bone or was something we didnt want anyone else to know? Could the McCanns have done this before they benefited from donations from old people, school children and other kind-hearted people who wanted to help them and help Madeleine? At one time they couldn't afford to pay their own mortgage yet now they can afford to sue anyone who doesn't believe what they say.

That's what makes these two people (and their Team) so utterly repugnant......they wouldn't pay for a babysitter, which resulted in the death of their first born, but they will use the donated millions to pay their mortgage and sue people.

The McCanns certainly have got their priorities round the wrong way, unless this was always the plan of course....the wider agenda. The McCann supporters have always been banging on about libel and being sued way back in the early days....well before the McCann's took their very first court action. How right they turned out to be.

And the government and police and media just let them get away with this fraud.

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Post by Gillyspot on Sun 19 Jun 2011 - 18:55

And as you recall Brian Kennedy stated when the fund was set up that it was to be spent mainly on legal expenses but when the Mccanns were made arguidos the fund wasn't used to pay for their defence if I recall. So they clearly wanted the money to sue newspapers and television media (oh and poor Tony).
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Post by aiyoyo on Wed 27 Jul 2011 - 14:51

Don't forget to include Pat Brown to the list - she's McCanns' latest victim!

Thank you very much for the reminder, aiyoyo, I've updated the list of McCann Team legal actions, as I promised I would, please see the OP - Tony Bennett
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A COMPENDIUM OF MCCANN-RELATED LIBEL ACTIONS Empty Update: the list groweth

Post by Tony Bennett on Tue 13 Sep 2011 - 10:23

In the past few weeks since I posted up the original compendium of 18 Team McCann-related libel actions, FIVE more have come to light, and the OP has been updated accordingly.

One was a historic attempt to silence Portuguese journalist Paulo Reis, another was the recent removal of Pat Brown's e-book from sale on Amazon, and the other three unfortunately concern myself.
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Post by Gillyspot on Tue 13 Dec 2011 - 8:16

From coverage of the Leveson Enquiry and more specifically Viscount Rothmere's testimony (major sharehold of Associated Newspapers)

"Associated Newspapers, publisher of the Daily Mail and formerly of the Evening Standard, made a substantial donation to the McCanns in 2008 after they sued for libel. The Daily Mail agreed to carry free adverts on behalf of the Find Madeleine campaign but refused to apologise, according to Gerry McCann. The Evening Standard agreed to publish an apology."

And

"Asked again whether he had any concerns before the McCanns sued, Rothermere said: "I am very deeply sympathetic to everything the McCanns have gone through."

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2011/dec/12/daily-mail-madeleine-mccann-viscount-rothermere?newsfeed=true


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