Tommy Sheridan to sue News of the World

by ScotsLawBlog on January 11, 2011

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Tommy Sheridan to sue for breach of privacy

One may have mistakenly thought that we wouldn’t be hearing any more about Tommy Sheridan until his sentencing for perjury on 26 January 2011. That would be wrong, as Tommy Sheridan is now preparing to take legal action against both the News of the World and the Metropolitan Police, his lawyer, Aamer Anwar, confirmed on 7 January 2011. The case is being prepared after Sheridan’s personal details emerged following an investigation into phone-hacking.

Following the phone-hacking investigations, Glenn Mulcaire and Clive Goodman were jailed back in 2007. Recent investigations have led to the suspension of news editor Ian Edmondson.

As STV News reports, presenter Chris Tarrant, comic Steve Coogan and actress Sienna Miller are all lining up to take similar legal action against the News of the World for breaching privacy laws.

Comment

It will be interesting to see how these new developments will affect the Tommy Sheridan saga in the long run. It seems, however, that the alleged breach of privacy is separate from the perjury issues and therefore will have no impact on the criminal proceedings and sentencing should commence as planned on 26 January 2011.

Mr Anwar claims that “This won’t be an action for damages; it’s an action to find out what went on…It is in the public interest to find out what’s going on.” While that may be true, it is difficult to imagine the “one-uppance” struggle between Sheridan and the News of the World ending with the News of the World reclaiming all of the £200,000 paid in damages following the defamation case, money which Sheridan was never entitled to spend, AND with Sheridan potentially having to pay for the NOTW’s expenses in that civil case, if appealed successfully. The word “settlement” comes to mind… And in any case, Sheridan should have no shortage of time in prison to collect his thoughts and write a best-seller.

Another battle commences, but the war isn’t over. There is a lot to be said for staying strong, as Sheridan would say.

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