December 13th, 2011

Press Freedom Campaigner Dominic Raab Seeks Gagging Order

At the height of the phone-hacking scandal, backbench Tory MP Dominic Raab took to the Huffington Post to pen a passionate defence of the freedom of the press:

“Above all, we need to preserve the rule of law, hold those in authority to account and defend free speech… the Press Complaints Commission has been discredited. A stronger mechanism of oversight, at arms-length from politicians and the media, is needed. But, that is not the same as calling for tighter legal restrictions on reporters.”

Given his clearly deep rooted convictions about  the ability to scrutinise those in power, you might well ask why Raab is trying to gag a former colleague in the High Court under the guise of suing the Mail on Sunday for libel.

In Court 14 last Thursday, Raab’s lawyers pleaded to Justice Tugendhat that the now MP’s  former colleague in the office of David Davis, who can only be named as “Miss E”, should be gagged and banned from passing a Witness Statement about his behaviour, produced for her Industrial Tribunal, to Associated Newspapers. The Mail on Sunday ran a story last year that Raab had been accused of being a “sexist bully” by “Miss E”, resulting in a £20,000 settlement paid to her and a confidentially agreement before an Employment Tribunal hearing in 2007. Ever since then Raab has been on the warpath; he is suing Associated for damages, but crucially he is trying to silence the one person who could determine whether the original story is true. By gagging “Miss E” Raab is essentially preventing the libel aspect of his claim being fairly judged on the evidence of her Witness Statement.

The whole thing smells rather fishy, not least the part about needing the gag because of the “huge emotional hurt” that the black-belt wearing Karate champion and boxing MP says he is going through.  Raab’s lawyers claimed that if “Miss E” speaks then the original confidentiality agreement between Davis, Raab and her is null and void so she will have to pay back the money. Her lawyers cited “increasingly threatening emails” in court.

Such is the sensitivity around it all that Guido had to go down to the Royal Courts of Justice himself to get his own Court Order last Thursday in order to get third party access to the papers relating to the case. Justice Tugendhat has reserved judgement to a later date…

Such is the sorry state of the freedom of the press nowadays that the newspapers are cowed by politicians from reporting their murky goings on for fear of statutory repercussions. Guido is still not able to tell you what he was going to tell Lord Justice Leveson in his own evidence to the inquiry because he has been restricted by him from saying what an ass Leveson had made of himself…


100 Comments

  1. 1
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    Two faced tosser, but what do expect these days?

    Like

  2. 2
    Gordon Brown says:

    my boiler has overheated

    Like

  3. 6
    AC1 says:

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/global/blog/2011/dec/13/belgium-attack-grenades-thrown-at-bus-stop-in-liege-live-updates

    Belgium attack: grenades thrown at bus-stop in Liège – live updates

    • ‘Four dead’ and dozens injured after blasts in Belgian city
    • Attacker threw grenades into crowd before shooting self
    • Situation ‘under control’, say police

    Like

    • 10
      smoggie says:

      Could be a British Separatist.

      Like

    • 22
      Really really really says:

      AC, even the BBC had this on at 12.30. Old news. What’s next?

      Like

    • 26
      MAD FRANKIE HADDOCK son of COD says:

      I wonder if Dave was there Christmas shopping ?
      Belgium another country who were eternally grateful to Britain for saving their sorry arse’s from German occupation . Twice
      Only for them to jump on the Titanic with them ,and sit there fucking smirking like a fucking Gurning contest at Nigel Farage
      Fuck them “Let them eat fragmentation grenades” Don’t call us !

      Like

      • 44
        Emperor van Rumboy says:

        The EU isn’t working: how should it change?

        When the old King Lear, tired from his long reign, resolved to vacate the throne in
        favour of his three daughters, he asked them ‘who doth love us most’. His oldest
        daughter Gonerill boasted that her love for him was beyond words, and was duly
        assigned a third of the kingdom. His second daughter Regan sighed that he was her
        only joy in life, to be rewarded with another third of the kingdom. His third and
        favourite daughter Cordelia, however, put honesty above flattery, explaining that s
        she had to divide her love between father and husband. She was promptly disinherited and banished from the kingdom.

        This is how the European Union is usually debated. A chorus of europhiles revels in
        lyrical eulogies to the European project: Schuman’s grand vision of forging a common
        destiny between the peoples of Europe to end centuries of misery and strife.
        Whoever dares to suggest that more Europe is not always better, that there can be such a thing as a shared loyalty to the European institutions and the nation-state,even worse, that the overwhelming majority of powers should remain the preserve of the member states, is swiftly branded a reactionary xenophobe and
        ostracised from the community of reasonable, peace-loving people.

        http://www.openeurope.org.uk/essay_prize_winners.pdf

        Like

    • 35
      MrAngry61 says:

      Live updates of what? The ensuing traffic congestion?

      Typical leftie eurocentric bias – if something similar happened in Brum the Graun wouldn’t bother with live updates.

      Like

    • 36
      jgm2 says:

      Perhaps UKIP has upped the ante.

      Like

    • 43
      I Remember You Hoo says:

      Nordine Amrani, North African name.

      Like

    • 46
      MAD FRANKIE HADDOCK son of COD says:

      According to sky Two suspects still at large , and everbody told to stay indoors !

      Like

    • 48
      Daniel says:

      Keep repeating the mantra:

      “I_mmigration is good…..”

      Like

    • 52
      Tuscan Tony says:

      He’s a North African from the Belgian news sites. Probably one of those pesky atheist troublemakers.

      Like

  4. 8
    Sherlock says:

    So to discover who miss E is we have to look back at the records of the Office of David Davis.

    http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm/cmsecret/memi01.htm

    Like

  5. 9
    MAD FRANKIE HADDOCK son of COD says:

    A refreshing change to see a Troy MP , with a Woman involved !

    Like

  6. 12
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    Guido/Neo Guido

    If she is not allowed to put her side how can any of this be described as justice?

    Like

    • 16
      Jimmy says:

      She accepted money to keep her mouth shut. Why shouldn’t she keep her end of the bargain?

      Like

      • 27
        Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

        The truth shall be silenced?

        Like

        • 31
          smoggie says:

          Presumanly he forgot to get the Mail on Sunday to sign said confidentiality agreement.

          Like

          • Jimmy says:

            I sense you’re a little out of your depth here.

            Like

          • smoggie says:

            Only while intellects like yours are around Jim.

            Like

          • Jimmy says:

            It’s nothing to do with intellect, but if you’re interested you can look up “tortious intereference” . Not to be confused with “tortoise interference” which is something else entirely.

            Like

          • smoggie says:

            My remark about the Mail on Sunday was facetious but it had a point in fact. That they are not party to the confidentiality agreement.

            It is not the paper which is inducing Miss E to breach her obligation but potentially the Court, which is what Raab’s lawyers are seeking to prevent.

            Tortious Irrelevance more like.

            Like

      • 29
        Engineer says:

        Not quite. She accepted money in compensation for some wrong she was judged to have suffered, not to keep quiet. A confidentiality clause seems to be a standard add-on to such settlements, these days. If she’d just agreed to a payment solely to keep her mouth shut, that would have been a bribe, wouldn’t it?

        Well, that’s what I read from Guido’s post – and we’ve nothing else to go on.

        Like

      • 71
        Maximus says:

        Read the blog Jimmy. There are two matters: Miss E and Raab, and Raab and Associated Newspapers. The confidentiality clause in the first case is being used to obstruct due process in the other case. Raab wants the existence of his agreement with Miss E. to be upheld as both legally visible and legally invisible at the same time. IANAL but this contravenes the Law of Non-Contradiction. Not that your average marxist gives a stuff as they have the super, improved, trump-everything Joker called the Laws of Dialectics. Raab of course cannot claim to be both a Tory and a marxist at the same time either, but on the evidence so far it appears he is going to have a damn good try.

        Like

        • 83
          Jimmy says:

          There aren’t two matters. The employment matter is over, resolved to the satisfaction of the parties. The Hitler on Sunday however has got wind of the allegations. At the risk of jumping to conclusions my guess is that the source was not Raab, what do you think?

          Like

  7. 13
    Jimmy says:

    Are you in any way related to that chap who was on tv the other week bragging about how he would ignore any privacy law? It did look like you.

    Like

  8. 15
    Cato Street Conspirator says:

    ‘The Esher and Walton MP also suggested loosening some employment rights to “encourage business to create more jobs overall, by reducing the risk and costs of being burdened with slack or under performing staff.”‘

    Yes, no rights for anyone by Domini Crabb, eh?

    Like

    • 75
      AC1 says:

      Eh?

      At the moment employing someone is a massive risk. This bureaucratic cost is felt not by bureaucrats, but through vast numbers who are underemploymened (on part time contracts) or unemployed.

      Like

  9. 17
    Mornington Crescent says:

    Best bit (of many good bits) from his Wiki entry:
    “In October 2011, Raab participated in a debate for The Guardian on human rights with Shami Chakrabati of Liberty. In the piece, Raab argued for a British bill of rights rather than the Human Rights Act both to protect our core freedoms and curtail judicial legislation.”

    Fucking hypocrite.

    Like

  10. 19
    Ah! Monika says:

    Guido, I suspect you see this Blog of yours continuing until it provides you with a healthy pension ( Mrs G to note )
    In choosing political shenanigans you are assure of a never-ending steam of topics.
    Not all fools are politicians but……..

    Like

  11. 25
    MrAngry61 says:

    If the Mail ran a story without holding the evidence then their legal review team needs a shaking up.

    As far as the MP is concerned, I hope that he’s deselected irrespective of whether the witness statement is gagged or not.

    I hope that We The People aren’t contributing to his legal expenses too.

    Like

  12. 34
    Mystery says:

    It’s a double bluff. Miss E is actually Mister Y.

    Like

  13. 45
    MrAngry61 says:

    O/T

    Out of the blue I’ve received an email from the Labour candidate for Feltham/Heston, Seema Malhotra, “thanking you for all your help and support”.

    Since I’ve never met her, voted Labour or visited the constituency the Lab our perty must be using harvested email addresses.

    Like

  14. 51
    Maxy says:

    Dear Santa
    Could I have an injunction in my stocking this year?
    I’ve been good.
    Sortof.
    Thankyou

    Like

  15. 67
    Kered Ybretsae says:

    Big Jessie with boxing glovies. Free Press…Free Blogs and not to forget Free Beer!!

    Like

  16. 69
    Cynical-old-bag says:

    Why should we be surprised? We’ve stood there, done nothing, and let them do it.

    We all get what we deserve.

    Like

  17. 72
    Some Geezer wot has known a few sharp shysters in his day says:

    Mr Raab is availing himself of the legal doctrine of “collateral estoppel,” which basically says that if you defended yourself in a suit and lost, the evidence discovered in that trial can be used against you in another suit. If you settle out, with a confidentiality clause attached to the payoff, the evidence has to be re-tried before a finder of fact, and not just admitted as the established truth of the matter. “Twenty thousand quid and shut your gob” means that if he sues The Mail on Sunday for libel, they will have to produce E. in person, where she can be cross-examined. If the fishwrap says it printed the story based on a statement which was, in essence, disavowed by the witness in consideration of quick settlement of the case, they can’t claim any overriding public interest in revealing it unless they can somehow show the settlement was procured by force or fraud. As for paying back Mr Raab his 20 grand, it would be added to the damages the fishwrap would have to pay if he succeeds, more than likely.

    (Also, neat bit of apophasis there re: Leveson!)

    Like

  18. 76
    The Real World says:

    Gagging order = puke

    Like

  19. 79
    Mr Justice Turkeyforahat says:

    I’m with Raab on this one but I’d better make it look like i am giving it my justical best.

    Like

  20. 86
    Jimmy says:

    Incidentally, is the HoS counsel any relation? And why can’t he spell “counsel”?

    Like

  21. 95
    Anonymous says:

    the sorry state of the High COurt is also exposed by this story.

    “Upon hearing council…”

    Sheesh…..

    Like

  22. 98
    Daily Bullshit on the BBCEU. says:

    Our media is a disgrace. They can never get their facts or story straight. I stopped buying the guff a long time ago. TV media is not much better. The BBC is hellbent on boring us all to death with its anti Cameron and Pro Euro stance. The Beeb is shyting itself incase Brussels stops subsidising the BBC to promote the European Union over and above UK politics. So much for impartiality.

    Like

  23. 100
    Anonymous says:

    Google News Search “Dominic Raab MP sexist bully” and see what comes up?

    Like


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