Rebekah Vardy has misplaced her “Wagatha Christie” libel case towards Coleen Rooney, in a dramatic self-inflicted authorized defeat that leaves her fame destroyed.
Three years in the past Rooney carried out a “sting” operation to seek out out who was leaking tales from her non-public Instagram account to journalists on the Solar. Rooney recognized the perpetrator with the now-infamous phrases: “It Was……… Rebekah Vardy’s account.”
Vardy strongly denied passing data to the Solar and sued Rooney for libel in a bid to revive her fame, leading to a multimillion-pound courtroom case on the excessive courtroom in Could.
On Friday, Mrs Justice Steyn dominated that Vardy’s libel declare had failed, that means it was all for nothing.
Bringing the case meant Vardy – the spouse of the Leicester Metropolis footballer Jamie – endured days of painful cross-examination in entrance of the world’s media on the excessive courtroom in central London. This coated the whole lot from her historical past of promoting kiss-and-tell tales to tabloids concerning the singer Peter Andre, allegations she had leaked particulars of her husband’s relationship together with his teammates, and her personal report of passing data to the Solar. Reasonably than clearing her identify, the case has left her nursing a nasty defeat and a tarnished fame.
Throughout the seven-day trial the courtroom heard of excruciating private WhatsApp messages despatched by Vardy towards Rooney, particulars about her attempting to promote a narrative a couple of drink-driving arrest involving the Chelsea footballer Danny Drinkwater to the Solar, and her makes an attempt to shift the blame for the leaks about Rooney on to her personal former agent Caroline Watt.
Specifically, there was widespread mockery in courtroom of the lack of probably essential proof by Vardy and people round her. In a single occasion WhatsApp messages held on a cellphone have been misplaced after the system was dropped off the facet of a ship within the North Sea shortly after a request was made to look it. Vardy’s personal copy of the identical messages was misplaced whereas within the means of backing them up. Different information additionally went lacking, prompting Rooney’s attorneys to invoke a authorized precedent from 1722 to argue that – within the absence of proof – the decide ought to assume the worst.
The authorized crew for Rooney, the spouse of the previous Manchester United footballer Wayne, admitted to the courtroom that they didn’t have a single smoking gun that proved definitively that it was Vardy who was liable for the leaks. Nonetheless, they defended the declare on two grounds: first, that the accusation was true primarily based on circumstantial proof out there to Rooney; and secondly, that it was within the public curiosity for Rooney to make the accusation towards Vardy.
As a result of juries have in impact been abolished for libel trials in England and Wales, there was no on the spot verdict as to who gained the case when the hearings completed in Could.
Vardy’s crew had instructed the courtroom her life had been made hell by Rooney’s public accusation, which left her open to widespread mockery, social media abuse, and damaging chants when her husband performed soccer.
Her barrister, Hugh Tomlinson, mentioned his shopper would have needed to have been “very intelligent or very cynical” to have undertaken the handbook deletion of WhatsApp messages. He mentioned it will be an “terribly sophisticated conspiracy” to have deleted all of the proof.
The case has change into a serious cultural speaking level, with a number of tv tasks primarily based across the courtroom case at the moment within the works.