Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Justice for Bloggers

This is a picture from last night taken of the "famous 3" bloggers and comrades in arms Dave, John and Alex in a Chancery Lane Curry house.

We were all singing "The Internationale" at the time even though it appears as if I was just posing. As if...

We were celebrating what was on the whole - a good day for freedom of expression and justice for bloggers.

Thanks to Alex's top brief MH and best wishes to Master R on his retirement. There are still troubles ahead (Dave is still facing the full monty) but today was good news and a victory for common sense.

So lets face the music and dance


Anonymous said...

Great news, John - and not just for you three musketeers. It's an immensely important case for all bloggers etc.

Here's to a complete victory in the near future!


Anonymous said...

Hip hip hooray!!!!!!!!!

ModernityBlog said...

Hang on John, what is the real, full story?

They've chuck your cases out as frivolous, but Dave O still has more to come?

PS: I appreciate that given the nature of the Tory concerned that you might want to be a bit circumspect with your comments.

John Gray said...


Alex and I are not quite out of the woods yet. I hate censorship but will try and find another way of updating you over the weekend rather than this blog.

John Gray said...

Kaschke, complaints and kirschtorte

*Alex Hilton, star of the Labour blogosphere and Labour candidate for Kensington & Chelsea, won a minor victory in the High Court this week, in a case which illustrates how easy it is to get sued for libel in the UK. He owns the website Labourhome, on which another Labour blogger, John Gray, wrote about a political activist named Johanna Kaschke, who left the Labour Party in 2007, to join George Galloway's Respect Party, then joined a communist party of some description, and since autumn 2007 has been an active Conservative. In 1975, Kaschke was falsely suspected by the German police of links to the Baader Meinhof terrorist gang. She was arrested, but eventually released and awarded compensation.

She objected to having this old story dug up on LabourHome. Hilton removed the post and offered right of reply, but she decided to go to court. She lodged five complaints, but this week, the court struck out four. One point m'learned friends may yet have to deliberate, seriously, is whether it is actionable to describe someone as "one cherry short of a Schwarzwalderkirschtorte".


ModernityBlog said...

bril, says it all.

jams o donnell said...

I'm glad to hear that common sense is prevailing. I hope that the remaining claim is kicked out soon.

Johanna Kaschke said...

I never was accused of links to the Baader-Meinhof terrorist gang by the German Police ever. It's is a falsety you keep on publishing on your blog. Also found this on the Independent, also written to them that I was never accused of links to the German Baader-Meinhof Terrorist gang. Also I was never offered a right of reply on Alex Hilton's site in the wording that I wanted.

John Gray said...

Ms Kaschke
If you had any concerns about this post you should have contacted me in the proper way. Since you have chosen to make this comment in a semi-public arena and on your own blog I will respond.

As you well know by now I consider your argument that the German authorities never suspected you (wrongly or falsely) of being a member is to me completely and utterly ridiculous. The evidence is overwhelming.

Please note that Master Rose has ordered that the meaning is “suspected” not accused.

Alex did offer you a full reply and you refused for whatever reason.

Johanna Kaschke said...

In the latest judgment Mr Justice Stadlen agrees with my point of view in respect of the accusations that you continue to insinuate.

Johanna Kaschke said...

About the reply if you look it up in the paperwork he said he lost it when I sent it to him and I said at the time in 2007, just after the letter of claim had been sent, if he prints that Right of Reply I will completely be satisfied and not bring a case against him in a court of law and then he wrote to me that I should send it to him again because he lost it. And then I said I would settle the case there and then if he printed my full reply, which was critical of Labour and paid my expenses to that point, which was a pity compared to the costs that have been racked up so far.

Johanna Kaschke said...

And further to make that differentiation between accused and suspected. In my case it was an arrest warrant, and you keep on forgetting that they put all their suspicions into that warrant and the word Baader-Meinhof was not there. So how can you proof what suspicions the police might have had 35 years ago? Again you are trying to put people's mind into a time warp and as I already supplied a letter from the Attorney General that underlined the word never and it said that I was never under suspicion to be involved with such a circle of persons such as the RAF, BM. (Sorry do not mean Royal Airforce.)

Johanna Kaschke said...

And to explain that even further to you again, it was - I believe - because I offered to Alex Hilton to drop the case against him for free when he prints my Right of Reply that my "No win, no fee" lawyer got angry and dropped out of the contract, hence I then asked Alex to pay legal fees in the sum of £600 at the time. I think that is a very reasonable cause of action on my part. I am just puzzled how Alex Hilton can seriously maintain that he offered me a right of reply when he lost my right of reply in any case. Another Right of Reply offer I made in November 2008, then Alex Hilton refused to print it by letter from his solicitors.

John Gray said...

Hi Ms Kaschke
13.48: Since you have chosen to make public comments on this blog rather than communicate in the usual way I will respond.

I have not a clue what you are going on about with regard to Mr Justice Stadlen judgement. As far as I can see he did not “agree” with “you” at all! Please reference your points.

I note that in his judgement you lost all the points of law, have to pay back Alex his costs and have the most minimal possible proof of publication against you (yet you claim it is your “victory” on your blog?).

13.53: So you admit now that he did offer you a right of reply! So are you being untruthful your comment of 08.16?

13.57: you just don’t get it do you? There is a huge difference between “accused” and suspected”. Of course you were suspected of being a terrorist "suspect"! You admit that anyone who was at all radical at the time was suspected for crying out loud!

You admit to have had been “involved” in raising funds for an organisation which was openly sympatric to left wing terrorism, you admit to had been living with rich students who were terrorist sympathisers, you admit to have been on political demos with your boyfriend who wanted you to attack the Police, you admit to have been a member of a gun club, you admit that you had been changing your address a number of times, you admit that a former close friend of yours and her boyfriend had been arrested for armed robbery just before you were arrested, you admit that you were arrested for being suspected of being a member of a criminal and terrorist gang in possession of articles which could be used for terrorism. You were kept in prison for several weeks. How can you say you were not a “suspect”.

The letter from the German authorities in (1977?) has nothing at all to do with your previous arrest. They released you in 1975 and gave you compensation. No wonder they did not think you were involved in that kidnap and murder in 1977. How on earth can anyone think otherwise?

1910: again, putting aside the nonsense – Alex did offer you an apology and you being you – you refused.

No wonder your solicitors kicked you into touch and you cannot get anyone else to act for you.

Johanna Kaschke said...

I have not admitted anything you say, there is no point in writing to you as you just report more lies about me

John Gray said...

the truth hurts

Johanna Kaschke said...

I think Mr Gray I shall be writing to you about that latest posting with a prospect of filing a new claim against you

John Gray said...

and it's called abuse of process with costs up front.