June 14, 2012
Solicitor settles phone hacking libel claim
Met Police and Mark Lewis join in Statement in Open Court
The claim was brought over a statement by the Metropolitan Police Service to the Press Complaints Commission that Mr Lewis wrongly quoted what had been said to him by Detective Inspector Mark Maberly when giving evidence to the Select Committee on Culture, Media and Sport in 2009, see previous 5RB reports of judgments on 25 May 2012 and 31 March 2011.
The joint statement read to Mr Justice Eady on 14 June 2012 included the following:
“The [MPS] is here today to confirm that it regrets that the statement made by it may have been misinterpreted in some quarters and takes this opportunity to confirm that it has no reason to believe that Mark Lewis gave anything other than evidence which was to the best of his recollection when he appeared before the Parliamentary Select Committee. Equally, Mr Lewis for his part is happy to confirm that he withdraws the allegation of dishonesty made in this claim against DI Maberly and recognises that he also gave an account of events ot the best of his recollection.
In a statement the MPS said:
“In light of media coverage about the settlement reached between the MPS and Mark Lewis, we can confirm that Mr Lewis has agreed to accept £30,000 in settlement.”
“The MPS has agreed to contribute £176,153.60 towards the claimant’s costs. The MPS has not admitted liability in this matter but is rightly mindful of the cost of legal proceedings to the public purse, so we are pleased that a potentially expensive libel trial has been avoided.”
5RB’s William Bennett acted for Mark Lewis. Adrienne Page QC and Jacob Dean acted for the Metropolitan Police Service.
* non-resident practising member