Government’s New Anti-Jolyon Legal Fundraising Reforms

Guido must commend Justice Secretary Robert Buckland for knowing precisely how to wind up Jolyon Maugham. He will shortly announce reforms to online legal fundraising, a practice most famously used by Jolyon’s Good Law Project. The changes come amid concerns the racket is ripe for exploitation of donors who may be unaware what exactly they’re funding. As one government source pithily explains:

“‘You could donate to fund a case seeking stronger protections for animals such as foxes only to see your money end up indirectly bankrolling a case to make it easier for children to get medical treatment helping them change gender.”

“Lawfare” is politics by other means; we’ve seen rich Europhiles try for years to frustrate the outcome of the referendum in the Courts. Inevitably, as a wealthy elite minority is increasingly at odds with a populist government, this is not an unexpected development. Responding to the clearly-targeted move, Jolyon told the Mail on Sunday that crowdfunding puts into the hands of normal people a modest tool with which to try to keep government on the straight and narrow”. Guido looks forward to this modest tool being cut down to size soon…

UPDATE: Jolyon has since written a blog claiming the move is a “deceitful and bullying attempt to target a critic”. A government source responds:

“Typically, the fox-clubber thinks this is all about him and that the government are petrified of his vanity project. In reality, he’s an occasional and minor administrative irritant and what we’re looking at are reforms to a sector he himself suggests could be the next mis-selling scandal.”

“It is telling that he fails to address the issue raised about the potential for costs being awarded and then recycled into a totally separate cause– something several of his colleagues at the Bar have sounded the alarm over”

mdi-timer 7 June 2021 @ 11:00 7 Jun 2021 @ 11:00 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
The Good Law Project’s Own Cronyism

Jolyon Maugham’s brainchild The Good Law Project is once again patting itself on the back; this time for “challenging the culture of cronyism” by suing the government for “awarding lucrative PPE contracts […] to companies with political connections”, and pushing legal action against the Cabinet Office. “Allowing those in power to continue to benefit from rampant cronyism,” they claim, “is simply not an option.” How noble.

“You must be the change you wish to see in the world” is a famous injunction to those who wish to change the world. The Good Law Project’s campaign against cronyism appears to be for other organisations, not their own management team. Last October, Rachel Smethers – daughter of the campaign’s director and co-founder Sam Smethers – joined the group as its Head of Communications, having previously worked in Parliament as an advisor to Harriet Harman (as shown above). We have not found an advertisement for the position from the organisation which campaigns so hard for open competition before the awarding of contracts…

Guido is sure The Good Law Project’s financial backers would expect the appointment to have been made strictly on merit, and as per the organisation’s Code of Conduct Rachel will have declared to the campaign director, her mother, their relationship:

Perform duties and conduct private affairs in a manner that avoids possible conflicts of interest with the work of Good Law Project.

Declare any financial, personal, family (or close intimate relationship) interest in matters which may impact on the work of Good Law Project.

Though given that Rachel’s mother Sam also once worked for Harriet Harman, it does all seem a bit incestuous. Cronyism in job contracts appears to be an option for Jolyon’s political connections.

mdi-timer 28 April 2021 @ 13:15 28 Apr 2021 @ 13:15 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Rees-Mogg Takes on Jolyon “Infamous Fox Murderer” Maugham

“This infamous fox murderer who is involved with the ‘Good Law Project’ is not somebody I’m particularly interested in. He is fussing and wasting time over the fact that my Rt Hon friend the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care was getting on with ordering PPE rather than getting officials to spend time filling out forms to keep this fox murderer happy.”


mdi-timer 25 February 2021 @ 11:30 25 Feb 2021 @ 11:30 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Left-Wing MPs Slammed by Judge for Using Court Cases as Personal Publicity

This afternoon saw a rare court victory for Jolyon Maugham as his Good Law Project won a case in the High Court against Matt Hancock, with the ruling:

“The Secretary of State acted unlawfully by failing to comply with the Transparency Policy” and that “there is now no dispute that, in a substantial number of cases, the Secretary of State breached his legal obligation to publish Contract Award Notices within 30 days of the award of contracts.”

Guido’s all for government transparency when it comes to how taxpayer’s money’s being spent, so has few bones with Jolyon over this one…

Behind the victory celebrations, however, Guido spotted an interesting ruling in the court’s judgement; admonishing lefty MPs Caroline Lucas, Layla Moran and Debbie Abrahams for adding their names to the case just to garner personal publicity and make the claim look political rather than legal:

“It is particularly important that this guidance is adhered to in cases where the parties sought to be added are politicians. No doubt, the addition of politicians as parties may raise the profile of the litigation. It may make it easier to raise funds. But these are not proper reasons for adding parties. In a case where there is already a claimant with standing, the addition of politicians as claimants may leave the public with the impression that the proceedings are an attempt to advance a political cause, when in fact their sole legitimate function is to determine an arguable allegation of unlawful conduct.”

Remainers? Showboating? There’s a first time for everything…

mdi-timer 19 February 2021 @ 16:00 19 Feb 2021 @ 16:00 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Year Ago Today: Jolyon’s Kimono Clad Fox Killing

The Brexit War is over and Jolyon Maugham has been totally defeated. His crowdfundng lawfare was relentless and, ironically, without him we would almost certainly have had a soggy soft Brexit. Brexiteers, in the end, owed much of their parliamentary success to his ill thought out tactics.

This morning is the anniversary of the death of another victim of Jolyon’s ill thought out tactics – the unknown fox. Lest we forget…

mdi-timer 26 December 2020 @ 08:08 26 Dec 2020 @ 08:08 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Jolyon Knocks His Builders for £490,000, Loses Legal Battle Against Them… the Case Continues…

Its been quite a while since we have run a story about reader’s favourite, the kimono-clad, fox-battering lawyer who specialises in hoovering up gullible Remainers’ money to launch legal strategies, with varying degrees of success, in a vain attempt to stop Brexit. Guido stresses the vain aspect…

Jolyon Maugham has taken a break from litigating to put up Uber prices by 20%, to instead get sued by his builders. From reading the documents of the court case it appears he is trying to knock his builders for £490,000. They unsurprisingly have reacted badly to this and are suing Jolyon for the money owed.

“The claimant building company had carried out renovations to the defendant’s home. Under the building contract, completion was scheduled for November 2015, but practical completion was not certified until July 2016 and each party attributed the delay to the other. A dispute arose as to the amount of the final account. The claimant valued the works at £1.59 million, which included claims for loss and expenses caused by the delay and for additional works carried out under the architect’s instructions. The defendant valued the works at £1.1 million which he paid.”

It appears that Jolyon not only thinks he knows better than 17 and a half million voters, he knows more about building than his builders. He tried to wriggle out of going to court over the debt by demanding that they put down security for legal costs – a ruse well used by people who think that they can put off a creditor by pushing up the costs of pursuing the debt. The kind of sharp practice that a slippery lawyer might try. Jolyon did try it on of course…

You have to be a pretty angry builder to take a silk to court over contested bills – the legal argument over the £490,000 unpaid bill will likely result in total costs of approximately £300,000 for the loser. So congratulations to Chivertons of Hampshire in defeating Jolyon’s attempt to force you to put up security for legal costs. Something Jolyon was unwilling to do in his tilt against Uber…

mdi-timer 2 November 2020 @ 15:20 2 Nov 2020 @ 15:20 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
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