05 Jul ARRON BANKS ALLOWED TO APPEAL CAROLE CADWALLADR LIBEL DEFEAT
The multi-millionaire pro-Brexit campaigner Arron Banks has been granted permission to appeal the decision against him in his unsuccessful libel action against Carole Cadwalladr, an investigative journalist for the Observer and Guardian.
The judgment against Banks, the founder of the Leave.EU campaign group, was handed down on 13 June 2022, following a five-day hearing in January. Banks had sued Cadwalladr over remarks made in 2019 in a TED talk video and a Tweet concerning his relationship with the Russian Government.
Dismissing Banks’s claim last month, Mrs Justice Steyn concluded that the Tweet had not caused him serious reputational harm and while the TED talk had done so, from its publication until late April 2020, Cadwalladr was able to rely on the defence of “publication on matter of public interest” for that period. After that point, the Judge said, no serious harm had been caused to Banks’s reputation, because views of the talk would have “peaked”, and those who watched it were likely already supportive of Cadwalladr.
Banks subsequently asked for permission to appeal, on five separate grounds. Steyn J rejected four of his grounds, but granted permission relating to Banks’s contention that whether the TED talk had caused him serious reputational harm should only have been considered once by the Court, from the date it was published.
It has been reported that the Judge allowed Banks permission to appeal on the basis that this was “an issue of law that hasn’t been determined previously”. His barrister, Sara Mansoori QC, has said that Banks will consider whether to make a further application, to the Court of Appeal, for permission to appeal in respect of the four grounds that Steyn J rejected.