Burgon Impressing Shadow Cabinet Colleagues in New Brief

burgon2

There was much snobbery from Labour moderates when Richard Burgon landed the role of Shadow Justice Secretary, but he has quickly forged a reputation as one of the Shadow Cabinet’s top thinkers. Each week, members of the Shadow Cabinet “legislation committee” meet to discuss policy. It is standard procedure that the party’s Justice spokesman gives his expert view on government bills, offering his thoughts on where they might trip up. During one recent discussion Burgon was asked for his legal opinion on a particularly complex piece of government legislation. According to a source familiar with the meeting, the Shadow Justice Secretary replied:

“Er, sorry, my speciality was personal injury law.”

Indeed, as this profile of the former ambulance chaser reveals, Burgon worked as a personal injury lawyer for Thompsons before he entered politics. Have you been involved in an accident at work that wasn’t your fault? Been given far too much responsibility because everyone else resigned? Give Richard a call…

Labour Wins Appeal to Block New Corbynista Voters

The Court of Appeal has ruled in favour of Labour and agreed that 130,000 new supporters who registered since January should not be allowed to vote in the Labour leadership contest. Will the Corbynistas appeal?

UPDATE: The five Corbynista complainants say they want to appeal to the Supreme Court but permission is refused.

Sun Names Elton John

elton

The Sun won their four-month long legal battle to report on Elton John’s sexual harassment case settlement. I guess that’s why they call it the news…

1,000 Bad Loser Barristers Sign ‘Block Brexit’ Letter

KOLVIN

Last week Guido reported that lap dancing lawyer Philip Kolvin QC is coordinating a letter from barristers to the Prime Minister trying to block Brexit. This morning City AM reveals over 1,000 bad loser barristers are putting their names to the hilariously pompous letter, which includes such cringeworthy pearls of £500-an-hour wisdom as:

Our legal opinion is that the referendum is advisory. The European Referendum Act does not make it legally binding.

Our opinion is that in order to trigger Article 50 of the Lisbon Treaty, there must first be primary legislation.

It is of the utmost importance that the legislative process is informed by an objective understanding as to the benefits, costs and risks of triggering Article 50. The reasons for this include the following:

There is evidence that the result of the referendum result was influenced by misrepresentations of fact and promises that could not be delivered. Since the result was only narrowly in favour of Brexit, it cannot be discounted that the misrepresentations and promises were a decisive or contributory factor in the result.

The outcome of the exit process will affect a generation of people who were not old enough to vote in the importance, e.g. 60% of those voting or 40% of the electorate. 

Essentially writing to David Cameron (PPE, Oxon) to tell him what every GCSE politics student knows: “parliament is sovereign”. Hopefully they were not doing so on billable time…

Lap Dancing Lawyer Tries to Block Brexit

KOLVIN

It’s not just Mishcon who want to block Brexit through the courts – now city silks are writing to the PM to demand Article 50 is not triggered. The pompous letter complains the “referendum did not set a threshold necessary to leave the EU”, whinges “the result of the referendum result was influenced by misrepresentations of fact” and moans “the outcome of the exit process will affect a generation of people who were not old enough to vote”. It tells Cameron to launch a Royal Commission and free vote in parliament. Who is behind this drivel?

Philip Kolvin QC, a silk who judging by his Chambers profile seems to do a lot of EU-law related work. His expertise is in licencing rather than constitutional law – specifically acting for “leading lap dance operators in London and the provinces” as well as “the sex shop industry in Soho”. Kolvin appears to have spammed his round-robin letter out across the whole Bar. Something tells Guido he won’t have a happy ending.

Zoopla CEO Behind Mishcon De Reya Anti-Brexit Legal Action

ALEX CHESTERMAN

City law firm Mishcon de Reya are launching a legal challenge to Brexit with the backing of a number of businesses who for some reason haven’t been named publicly. Guido can reveal one of the CEOs behind the action is CEO of the property website Zoopla. In an email to other businesses, CEO Alex Chesterman claimed:

“If the correct constitutional process is not followed then the notice to withdraw from the EU would be unlawful and open to legal challenge…

With this in mind, Mishcon de Reya, on behalf of a number of clients have commenced a legal process to ensure the UK Government will not trigger the procedure for withdrawal from the EU without parliamentary approval and have, subsequent to his article, retained Lord Pannick QC to act as counsel in this action. These steps seek to ensure that any Article 50 notification process is lawful.

I strongly encourage you to support this important issue. We want to ensure that this once-in-a-generation issue is handled properly under UK law with the correct constitutional process applied to an irreversible decision of this magnitude.

Please can I ask you to action as follows below:
 
1. Email Mishcon to lend your support/name to this process
2. Please use the hashtag: #mpstodecide and share/tweet the link to the Mishcon press release
3. Use this email as a basis to send your own version to your network to encourage wider support

If the referendum had been decided by FPTP, Leave would have won 440 seats to Remain’s 220. Good luck…

Cherie Blair: “Big Government is Doing Things to us Which are Unfair”

Cherie Blair, whose husband Tony created almost one new law for every day in office, railed against “big government” while supporting landlords in their judicial review of recent buy-to-let changes.

“United together, we can challenge the big government that is doing things to us which are unfair… I have a secret passion for homes under the hammer. And you know, time after time you see them interviewing people on that programme, and they are ordinary, decent people who have a little bit of money and have decided to try and use that wisely to provide for themselves and their families. I would have thought they were just the sort of people that a Conservative government would want to support”

Savour the buy-to-let landlord Cherie Blair bashing big government while lauding the Conservatives for naturally supporting “ordinary, decent people”This would never have happened under Maggie, or Tony for that matter…

Supreme Court Finds in Favour of PJS

The Supreme Court has found in favour of PJS, ruling that the rich and powerful can hide their misdemeanours from public knowledge. Farcically, Judge Mance concluded that PJS is “likely to be granted a permanent injunction notwithstanding the internet and social media publication” – despite admitting that anyone can access the information online, the judge has decided it is illegal to publish in print. The judge describes how PJS’s “solicitors have been doing their best to remove offending URLs and web pages”, well whatever he says they have demonstrably failed. He talks of how coverage on the internet has been “restricted“. He is asking for Chinese-style restrictions of what you can read online in England…

Lord Toulson disagreed with the other judges on the panel, arguing:

“that where the information is widely available, the form of the publication should not make a significant difference”

He is of course correct, but was outvoted by his fellow judges. The internet has made an ass of the law…

The ruling specifically excludes those in public office from the privacy protections. So it is still open season on politicians…

£500,000 Expenses Fraudster MEP Jailed

skinner peter

Remember Peter Skinner, the Labour MEP who clocked up £500,000 on “expenses” while enjoying a lifestyle of lavish Hawaiian scuba diving holidays, expensive jewellery, and stays in top class hotels? The crook was jailed today for four years. He claimed he had simply been confused about the EU’s generous expenses rules. Brussels is rotten to the core…

Alleged Granny Basher MP in Court Today

rimmer

Labour MP Marie Rimmer, accused of kicking an elderly Indy campaigner during the Scottish referendum, is in court for the first day of her trial. She denies the charges. Will Labour have to suspend another MP if the jury don’t believe her?

Blundering BBC Broadcast Hillsborough Verdict

BBC REDACTED hillsborough

The jury at the three year-long Hillsborough inquest have reached a majority verdict, which cannot be reported until 11am tomorrow morning. So it’s a pretty major blooper for the BBC to broadcast that verdict in their headline caption, redacted by Guido in the above image. Here is the Beeb reporter outside the court pretending not to know the result and explaining why they should not have put it up on the screen:

Potentially in contempt of court…

Still Awaiting Celebrity Threesome Injunction Decision

supreme court

PJS -v- News Group Newspapers Ltd

21 April 2016

On appeal from the Court of Appeal Civil Division (England and Wales)

At the end of the hearing on 21st April the Supreme Court announced that it would reserve judgment and give its decision at a later date.

The injunction granted by the Court of Appeal and continued by this Court remains in force.

No decision yet. One thing appears to have been accepted by both parties in the Supreme Court without challenge – that this website is outside the jurisdiction of the English Courts. Which is what Guido told Leveson, Carter-Ruck and various learned rent-a-quotes

Celebrity Threesome Injunction Decision on Thursday

sc

The Supreme Court will hear argument as to whether permission to appeal should be granted, and, if it is granted, as to whether the appeal should be allowed or dismissed. The interim injunction granted by the Court of Appeal will remain in place until the conclusion of the Supreme Court hearing, and at the end of the hearing the Supreme Court will decide whether to continue that injunction. Until then…

Injunction to Be Lifted Pending Appeal

elton

The injunction has been lifted but the names can not yet be published pending appeal. The gagging order remains in place until Wednesday 1pm…

UPDATE: The judge adds:

“The court should not make orders which are ineffective. It is inappropriate for the court to ban people from saying that which is common knowledge. Knowledge of the relevant matters is now so widespread that confidentiality has probably been lost.”

Read Lord Justice Jackson on the futility of injunctions here.

Rich’s Monday Morning View

injunction+judge

Irish Times Breaks Celebrity Threesome Injunction

See also: Lawyers Only People Enjoying ThreesomeNow David Furnish and Elton John Threaten Google

Untitled-1

Yesterday Guido gave an interview* to the Irish Times about the Celebrity Threesome Injunction. Lawyers Carter Ruck claim this article and others, despite being typed and uploaded in Ireland to be hosted on servers in the United States protected by the First Amendment, breaches their injunction covering England and Wales.

The injunction is incredibly restrictive; it not only prohibits reporting the facts of the matter, it prohibits linking to the story, identifying the National Enquirer or this site in any way. Which is why the British press is referring to a mystery “top blogger” and Google has been forced to remove links to our articles. The Irish Times however identifies the “top blogger”, names this website and even handily gives the headline to cut and paste into Google to easily find the censored article. Not really a legal issue for a foreign printed publication.

However as the photo above shows, the international edition of the Irish Times was freely available in London. It is printed at the Newsfax plant in Hackney…

*The article is no longer on the Irish Times website, it has been copied from the Google cache and is reproduced in full in the comments below.

Now David Furnish and Elton John Threaten Google

elton

Guido noticed an overnight drop in traffic to this website. Google search results were not sending as many referrals as we have been seeing recently. It appears Carter-Ruck have threatened Google for being in breach of the ridiculous injunction obtained by Elton’s husband David Furnish in relation to the so-called “celebrity threesome” case. Not entirely unexpected. Still not going to work, though Guido reserves the right to counter-sue for loss of earnings…

Tomorrow, behind a closed door – so much for open justice – an appeal hearing is set to be held where The Sun will ask judges to deliberate whether to free the media to report the case or continue to censor their identities. David Furnish and Elton John argue that they want to spare their children embarrassment. Should have thought of that before stripping down and lashing on the olive oil in the kiddie pool…

Around the world more and more publications are covering the story. Carter-Ruck are collecting more fees. More people are hearing about the triple trysts, even the broadsheets are delicately covering a story they would otherwise have ignored – the Streisand Effect is in operation globally. Guido wonders if Elton should consider doing a duet with Barbara?

See also: Lawyers Only People Enjoying ThreesomeIreland is Not North Korea, Kim El John

Lawyers Only People Enjoying Celebrity Threesome

elton-threesome-super-injun

The front page headline of the new National Enquirer, now on newsstands in the States, declares: “Elton John Betrayed by Cheating Husband!” Over 3 pages the US tabloid reports how lawyers for Elton John claim David Furnish did not have an affair because the singer knew about his extra-marital relationship. Elton has used an injunction to block publication of the exposé in Britain essentially on the basis that he does not want his children to see it. Understandable, however should it be his legal right?

Elton John Number 10

Here is a summary of the story:

The Enquirer reports that British businessman Daniel Laurence claims he had three encounters with Furnish, including one that involved “risky sex”. Elton’s lawyers deny Furnish had unprotected sex with Laurence. The unprotected sex allegation is particularly damaging because Furnish helps run Elton’s AIDS Foundation. According to the Enquirer, Furnish and Laurence began exchanging messages online in 2008 and hooked up in March 2009 at the Mayfair Hotel in London. Furnish “wanted me to penetrate him and was very demanding and specific about this,” Laurence said in an affidavit obtained by the tabloid: “We did have unprotected sex.”

The two men continued to communicate online — and saw each other again at an event in Palm Springs — but did not have sex again until April 2010. Laurence alleges the tryst took place in the London home Furnish shares with Elton John. The Enquirer published a Facebook chat it claims is between Furnish and Laurence. In it, Furnish asks Laurence about having a threesome. “I am getting hard thinking about it,” Furnish allegedly wrote, “I have to be sooooooo careful.” The threesome, which allegedly took place at the home of Laurence in December 2011, involved wrestling in a pool of olive oil. Laurence also alleged that Furnish was “into being tied up and dominated.” The Enquirer article comes only days after news that Elton John is facing a sexual harassment lawsuit from a former bodyguard. Jeffrey Wenninger alleges the singer groped him and encouraged him to show his penis.

Yesterday the Sunday Mail in Scotland published the story because it is (like Guido) outside the jurisdiction of the injunction. Our readers are not that interested in threesomes involving middle-aged gay men – unless they are in politics. Nevertheless there is an important principle at stake: should press freedom be curtailed by the rich on the grounds that they don’t want their children to be embarrassed? Guido has lots of online embarrassments soon to be discovered on the internet by his Google-savvy young children. As much as he would prefer to cover it all up, this protection would be a risky curtailment of press freedom. If Elton and David don’t want their children to think less of them, don’t do it. The whole thing is made even more ridiculous given millions of Americans and thousands of Scots have read the story. All the injunction is doing is making lawyers richer.

This case is not a serious criminal matter, however there is no doubt that the likes of Dominic Strauss-Kahn have used privacy laws to cover-up much more serious wrongdoing. Fear of public exposure is about the only way we can restrain wrongdoing by the rich and the powerful…

See also Ireland is Not North Korea, Kim El John

Guido’s Celebrity Injunction Advice

“If you don’t want to be on the front page of the newspapers then don’t pay hookers to stick dildos up your bum.”

Still applies today…

Elton John Packs David Furnish’s Bags

“He packed my bags last night, pre-flight,” David Furnish might have said of Elton John before the happy couple flew off on holiday to Venice this week. Oh the press still hounded them, all the papers had to say was: “the musician flashed a big smile… David looked equally as cheery”.[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +



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