It’s curious to see Trevor Mallard saying so much in social media about the progress of the defamation case against him. He seems to see it as an ongoing PR opportunity.
I wonder if Collins’ QC has sorted out a day for @johnkeypm to explain why he didn’t believe Collins and asked her a second time, to the High Court
And on Twitter:
Round one to Mallard and Little – next round not till November after privacy comm reports on leak
@johnkeypm in court next year
@Whaleoil: @TrevorMallard @johnkeypm Uhmm this was in chambers? #contempt” no. It is a decision
@Whaleoil @johnkeypm how much r u being paid by Lusk to defend Collins
@Whaleoil @johnkeypm discovery looking good already
@Whaleoil judge gave us timing we want
@Whaleoil: not #spin”
The APNZ article on the defamation claim implies he’s not defending it on the basis that what he said was true.
Set aside last week in February for watching
@johnkeypm explaining to court why he had to ask Collins twice whether she or her office leaked
Very happy with High Court decision to delay next hearing till November and case to next year. Though I’m looking forward to watching Key explain why he had to ask Collins twice about leak. If he didn’t believe her why should I.
A report on todays hearing from NZ Herald:
ACC defamation claim trial date set
A defamation case laid by ACC Minister Judith Collins against Labour MPs Andrew Little and Trevor Mallard has been set to go to trial, however, it could still be resolved by a Privacy Commissioner’s investigation into a leaked email about an ACC client.
A preliminary hearing was held in the High Court at Auckland this morning and a trial date was set for three to five days in February next year.A settlement conference has also been set down November when the matter could still be resolved outside of court.
Counsel should by that time have a report by Privacy Commissioner Marie Shroff, who is currently investigating how the email got to the media.
The majority of today’s court hearing cannot be reported, other than the directions given by Justice Geoffrey Venning.
He declined an application by the defendants’ counsel, John Tizard, to have the proceedings delayed pending the outcome of the Privacy Commissioner’s report, which Mr Tizard had submitted could be “critical”.
Justice Venning said the report may not be determinative, and the court would not be bound by its findings.
The trial is set to be before a judge alone, however, Justice Venning reserved the defence’s right to seek a jury in light of the report.
He said the key issues in the case were whether the comments made by Mr Little and Mr Mallard were on an occasion of qualified privilege; whether they were motivated by ill will; and whether they took improper advantage of the circumstances.
Posted by Pete George on July 18, 2012
Stephen Franks comments on a well known defamation case in Donations for freedom of speech:
I do not know whether Trevor Mallard and Andrew Little (both of whom I respect) made false statements about Judith Collins. If they were false I do not know whether they were calculated, reckless or just careless. That will be for a court to determine. But I do know they are scoffing at defamation law.
More importantly he looks at free speech versus “casual liars”.
Defamation law is the safeguard against false coin in the competitive marketplace of ideas. A Gresham’s law may apply in public debate, where unpunishable recklessness, and scandalous accusation would crowd out sober truth.
An assumption that usually you can trust what someone is telling you, and particularly your leaders or would-be leaders, is a vital element of social capital. New Zealand is currently a high trust country according the the World Values Survey.
High profile defamation cases remind casual liars they could pay a price help to preserve our trust in the honesty of others until proved otherwise. So proceedings that keep open the threat of a cost for reckless allegations are in the public interest.
There does need to be a way of addressing deliberate and repeat lying for political gain. Defamation law is far from ideal but it’s one of a limited number of options currently available.
More effective would be more public and media insistence on political honesty.
And more party and blog insistence on honesty would help too.
Posted by Pete George on June 9, 2012
Trevor Mallard posted a cartoon at Red Alert suggesting that Kiwis may be afraid of “calling a spade a spade” – in case they are threatened with being done by defamation.
I posted a comment:
(authentic unaltered screen capture image)
This comment never emerged from “moderation”. Is it stuck there, or has it been censored?
Does Trevor Mallard think that anything he says is just “calling a spade a spade”, but anyone who actually does call a spade a spade may be silently censored by him?
(image digitally altered)
UPDATE: even less spade calling allowed. Before:
That “tough.Trevor” was to me querying what happened to my first post – it’s obvious now it was censored.
Trevor is trying to get sympathy for himself being able to call a spade whatever he wants, and then resorts to censoring and banning others who are speaking frankly.
Posted by Pete George on April 12, 2012