Coleen Rooney’s team ‘pleased but not surprised’ as Rebekah Vardy request denied

One of Coleen Rooney's legal team, Paul Lunt, said they were "pleased, but not surprised" after a high court judge dismissed Rebekah Vardy's bid for summary judgment.

Mrs Justice Steyn dismissed the request, which would have involved a legal step allowing the judge to rule on some of the evidence without need for a trial.

It comes after Rebekah Vardy appeared to take a 1-0 lead in her Wagatha Christie libel battle with Coleen Rooney – but the case will still go to trial.

Mrs Justice Steyn (corr) ruled the case should be heard at what promises to be an explosive trial during which both WAGs will be called to give evidence – and subjected to cross examination.

I'm A Celebrity star Rebekah – the wife of Leicester City and England striker Jamie Vardy – alleges Coleen wrongly publicly outed her as a snitch who had leaked details of her private life.

In a trap straight out of a whodunnit mum-of-four Coleen, 35, revealed she posted three fake tales on her private Instagram Stories account – and blocked all followers except Rebekah from seeing them.

When the bogus stories were published Coleen claimed she knew the source of the leak on social media in dramatic style, announcing: "Its…Rebekah Vardy's account.''

The sting earned the wife of ex-England and Manchester United star Wayne Rooney the nickname "Wagatha Christie".

Mum-of-five Rebekah, 39, denies she was the leaker and is suing for libel seeking damages and a restraining order preventing Coleen repeating the allegation.

At a hearing last month (June) Rebekah's lawyers asked a judge to throw out parts of Coleen's defence as they were "irrelevant or peripheral".

In a judgment delivered yesterday (July 6), Mrs Justice Steyn rejected some of Coleen's claims against her rival WAG – but kept in other aspects of the case Rebekah had also wanted kicking out.

She dismissed a claim by Coleen that Vardy displayed "publicity-seeking behaviour" by demanding to sit behind her in someone else’s seat at Euro 2016.

The judge said even if the allegation was true it would not help Rooney’s case.

"The fact that a person seeks media coverage of their own attendance at a football match does not make it more probable that they would disclose private information about another person to the press,'' the judge said.

She also threw out an allegation Rebekah had leaked details about the libel case itself because that was not someone's "private" information.

But the judge rejected Vardy's bid to have evidence about her "exceptionally close relationship" with some journalists excluded from trial – ruling it was relevant.

She said the trial should also examine Coleen's claim Rebekah was the author of a "Secret Wag" column in which she allegedly spilled other footballers' partners' information.

The judge said it could be considered "similar fact evidence".

That means other WAGs Coleen has alleged Rebekah leaked "defamatory, unfavourable or unflattering" gossip about – including Abbey Clancy, 34, Kate Ferdinand, 29, Danielle Lloyd, 36, and Georgina Cleverley, 33 – could be called to appear at the trial.

The judge said there were "many factual issues to be resolved at trial".

Last night top UK media lawyer Matthew Dando said though Vardy had scored a couple of minor victories the ruling was a "good result" for Rooney and could trigger another attempt to settle out of court.

"The judge has given permission for Rooney to rely on many if not all of the important parts of her defence,'' he said.

"The judge has found that the broader context of Vardy’s relationship with the press is in many respects relevant to whether Rooney was right to point the finger at Vardy in the "whodunnit" story she told on Instagram.

"Taking this case to trial is a huge gamble.

"How it ends is likely to be determined as much by how each side thinks it will fare in the court of public opinion as by how they predict they’ll be perceived by the judge.

"Libel litigation is typically complicated, costly, hard-fought and harder still to resolve, and this case is no different.

"It shows the high stakes of making serious allegations on social media and the huge difficulties that arise in establishing the truth of what has been said.''

Source: Read Full Article