I first wrote about Simon Singh’s legal woes with the BCA back on the 30th March 2009. It’s now coming up to seven months later and with Simon we’ve been through one preliminary hearing, one refused written application for permission to appeal and now one ACCEPTED oral application for permission to appeal. The fact that it has taken over seven months just to get to a point where Simon has gained permission to question the validity of Eady’s (bogus) interpretation of the meaning of his article is a testament to just how time consuming and complex legal cases, and libel cases in particular, can be.
However, before slipping right back into depression over the UK’s libel law and their plentiful, and all too apparent, problems I think it is worth celebrating the fact that a judge, in this case Lord Justice Laws (what a name!), seemed in making his judgement to take due account of all the arguments and evidence that Eady so casually dismissed as irrelevant. At present it seems that the actual judgement has not been published, or if it has then it has not yet been presented and explained in detail to us non-law folk by the estimable Jack-of-Kent, however by all anecdotal accounts it seems that the judge considered a) the relevance of the surrounding paragraphs- the all important context and b) how it would be all but impossible for Simon to know or prove that an entire organisation was being deliberately dishonest.
This is just one judges opinion but I think it is an excellent illustration of the value of persistence and a clear indication that Eady’s interpretation of the meaning is not necessarily an interpretation that a different judge would have made. This is important because and vindicates the position that the case is worth pursuing not just for its symbolic value. Simon may still win and we may still see a court case that addresses the alleged ‘plethora’ of evidence for the BCA’s claims.