Wednesday 6 February 2013

Mail on Sunday pays damages over fraud claims

Last Thursday, MediaGuardian reported:

A top banking executive has won a high court apology and £60,000 in libel damages plus £690,000 in costs from the Mail on Sunday, over articles that falsely implied he was at the heart of a criminal mortgage fraud.

Irfan Qadir, a former Bank of Scotland director, sued over libels in two Mail on Sunday articles in May and June 2011.

The apology was published by the Mail on Sunday a few days later:

An article ‘Bank of Scotland director “drove us out with dogs’’’ on May 8, 2011, reported allegations in a writ that in 2005, Irfan Qadir committed perjury and intimidated three businessmen, causing fear for their own and their families’ lives, to gain control of a nightclub. The article did not report Mr Qadir’s denial of the claims and wrongly alleged that he had declined to comment.

A further article, ‘Top banker named in mortgage fraud case’ on June 19, 2011, reported an allegation in a separate case that Mr Qadir centred in a £49million bank fraud. In fact, the judge in that case made it clear this was unsupported by evidence in the five-month trial, stating that Mr Qadir did not lend any money and the allegations in court should not have been made. We are no longer pursuing a defence that the allegations in the articles are true. We apologise to Mr Qadir for the distress and embarrassment caused and are paying substantial damages and legal costs.

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