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High Court determines meaning of videos in Tommy Robinson libel case

Hizaji (litigation friend Yousef) v Yaxley-Lennon [2020] EWHC 934 (QB)

Related Member(s):
Emma Foubister, Ian Helme
Related Practice Area(s):
Media and Information Law
Court:
,

This judgment relates to a libel claim brought by a Syrian refugee schoolboy against far right activist Tommy Robinson, for comments made online after a video of the schoolboy being pushed to the ground and threatened with drowning provoked an outpouring of public sympathy. Tommy Robinson then posted two videos online making very serious allegations against the schoolboy.

This judgment was handed down following a hearing to determine the preliminary issue of the meaning of the videos. Nicklin J held that the natural and ordinary meaning of the First Video is:

·         “The Claimant had (1) as part of a gang, participated in a violent assault on a young girl which had caused her significant injuries; and (2) threatened to stab another child.”

And the meaning of the Second Video is:

·      “The Claimant had, as part of a gang, participated in a violent assault on a young girl which had caused her significant injuries.”

The final hearing has not yet been listed. See media coverage here.

Emma Foubister and Ian Helme were involved in this case.