Granting an interim injunction in favour of C1 and an order pursuant to s10(4) DPA in favour of C2:
(1) The Judge was bound by the rule in Bonnard v Perryman, which applies equally to claims of malicious falsehood. The Judge therefore had to be satisfied that no judge or jury could reasonably conclude that the statements made by the Defendant were true. In doing so, the Judge was not bound simply to accept the Defendant’s assertion that they are true and leave the matter to trial: Sunderland Housing Company Ltd and Anor v John Baines and Ors  EWHC 2359 (QB).
There was no issue as to whether the words referred to C1.
As to special damage, C1 relied on s3 of the Defamation Act 1952. In this regard, a party must show that the statement of which complaint is made is more likely than not to cause him pecuniary damage. In the ordinary course of things, derogatory statements about a commercial product are likely to put off some potential customers, with a consequent loss of revenue from sales and increases in costs. D did not suggest that the effect of his statements would not be to put off some potential customers, and his avowed specific purpose in publishing these statements was to do precisely that.
As to falsity, the Cs identified meanings which could be attributed to each of the videos which were the subject of the application, which concerned alleged misconduct by the Cs and deficiencies in the AKS stabiliser products. D argued that the Cs had lied in making guarantees about the products, and that each had acknowledged those lies. This lie, D said, was a deceit on C1’s customers and justified (as true) the various statements that D had made in his videos. None of the assertions about the product amounted to a guarantee, and the whole of D’s case appeared to be built on a false premise. No judge or jury, properly directed, could reasonably conclude that D’s various statements could be true. Nor was there any evidence at all to support C1’s claim that the products were defective, and C1 had provided the Court with evidence to demonstrate that its products were safe.
As to malice, there were features of the case which pointed to D having improper motives in publishing the material he did. However, in light of the conclusion that the statements were untrue there was no need to reach any conclusion on this issue. D would understand, from the judgment, that the statements he made in the videos were false. Any future publication of those videos (or any other similar videos which he may make in the future) would undoubtedly be malicious, and would amount to the tort of malicious falsehood.
(2) For the purposes of s10 DPA, C2 had given notice in writing to D to require him at the end of such period as is reasonable in the circumstances to cease processing his personal data. None of the relevant exceptions applied.
D resisted the data subject notice on the basis that (he said) the data in question was already in the public domain. There is no public domain exception to s10 of the DPA. D’s refusal to comply with the data subject notice was therefore not justified.
C2 had suffered substantial damage and distress as a result of the processing of his personal data by D, in the various uses to which D had put the Recording, the Trade Show Footage, and other images of C2. This was an appropriate case in which to order D to take steps to comply with the notice, and he was required to cease processing any personal data in respect of which C2 was the subject.