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Libel tourism: Blogger sued in the UK by Tanzanian media tycoon wins case
30 Nov 2012
BY DAISY WILLIAMS

A blogger sued for libel by a Tanzanian media tycoon won her case today (30 November). At the High Court in London, Mr Justice Bean ruled in favour of  Sarah Hermitage, who used her Silverdale Farm blog to criticise Reginald Mengi, Executive Chairman of IPP Ltd — a company with significant media interests in Tanzania.

Hermitage and her husband Stuart Middleton were driven from Silverdale Farm in Tanzania by threats and harassment. The court heard Megni’s brother Benjamin took possession of the farm following their departure. A defining factor in the ruling was the hostile coverage of Silverdale Farm by the IPP-owned newspapers. Mengi was ordered to pay £1.2million towards Hermitage’s legal costs.

Hermitage said today:

I set up my Silverdale Farm blog in 2009 to document our horrific experience in Tanzania, and to expose as a warning for others the corruption we encountered and our helplessness with no protection from the local Courts and officials.

To find myself then sued for libel in my own country, facing a claim of legal costs of £300,000 from Mr Mengi before the proceedings had even started, was itself frightening and oppressive.

 

5 responses to “Libel tourism: Blogger sued in the UK by Tanzanian media tycoon wins case”

  1. […] at all, since the country is home to libel lawsuits from all over the world. Get mad in Tanzania? Sue in London! Feel wounded in France, even though you raped a teen? Win big by videoing your complaints to a […]

  2. […] before the proceedings had even started, was itself frightening and oppressive. READ more Source: Libel tourism: Blogger sued in the UK by Tanzanian media tycoon wins case | Index on Censorship Sarah Harmitage blog : THE SILVERDALE CASE I ADMIRE REGINALD MENGI ..BUT I ALWAYS ASK MYSELF […]

  3. […] before the proceedings had even started, was itself frightening and oppressive.READ more Source: Libel tourism: Blogger sued in the UK by Tanzanian media tycoon wins case | Index on Censorship Sarah Harmitage blog : THE SILVERDALE CASE N.B Naona taasisi hii ya HUSETA imekosa kazi za muhimu […]

  4. […] Mr Justice Bean dismissed the claim in Mengi v Hermitage [2012] EWHC 3445 (QB) (30 November 2012), finding for the Defendant on both justification and qualified privilege. The case, brought by Reginald Mengi, a Tanzanian businessman and philanthropist with ownership interests in the Tanzanian media, concerned five postings on Sarah Hermitage’s Silverdale Farm blog and two emails. Carter Ruck, which acted for the Defendant on a CFA, has published a press release [PDF]. Index on Censorship reported the case here. […]

  5. […] A blogger sued for libel by a Tanzanian media tycoon won her case today (30 November). At the High Court in London, Mr Justice Bean ruled in favour of Sarah Hermitage, who used her Silverdale Farm blog to criticise Reginald Mengi, Executive Chairman of IPP Ltd — a company with significant media interests in Tanzania. Hermitage […] The post Libel tourism: Blogger sued in the UK by Tanzanian … UK tourism – Yahoo! News Search Results […]