OLD Media Moves

TechCrunch founder defaults on libel case in England

August 4, 2009

Dennis Howlett of ZDNet reports that the British courts have ruled against TechCrunch founder Michael Arrington in a libel case because he did not show up to defend himself.

Howlett writes, “In other words, both Arrington/Interserve attempted to move the case from Sethi’s home ground to another jurisdiction. The UK courts thought differently.

“It is my understanding that neither Arrington nor Interserve chose to defend the case in the UK courts and having given notice that they would not do so are precluded from raising a viable appeal. This means that under UK law, Arrington/Interserve are liable for any final monetary damages and costs the court chooses to award. Sethi tells me that his costs are of the order of £30,000 and the plaint calls for monetary damages of up to £50,000.

“Further since this will constitute a debt to the court, should Arrington attempt to enter the UK without first having settled the matter, he might be liable to immediate arrest and incarceration. That has yet to be tested but represents a risk that Arrington will need to consider for the future.”

Read more here.

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