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Scottish MP who criticised Israel wins court case after campaign to discredit him



*** Tommy Sheridan, a Scottish MP who has openly criticised Israel, became the victim of a "serious campaign to discredit" him, led by a sinister faction within his own party and a tabloid "news" paper. This is a typical example of the "flack" method of suppression, by which key people are prevented from straying too far outside certain boundaries, or punished and discredited if they do, thus discouraging dissent and free-speech, and undermining "democracy". The same tabloid has, over the years, been involved in various fake stories that coincide conveniently with state propaganda requirements, including the infamous "ricin plot" hoax. The tabloid was directly behind the recent phoney "terror" raid on a flat in London, during which police shot a Muslim suspect by "accident", all based on a "source" (anonymous as usual) whose evidence was exposed as false in court. ***

Sheridan victory in court battle

Tommy Sheridan has won his defamation case against the News of the World.

A jury of six men and five women took three hours to dismiss the tabloid's claims the Socialist MSP was a serial adulterer and swinger who used drugs.

Mr Sheridan, 42, who represented himself, said the victory was the equivalent of Gretna FC beating Real Madrid on penalties.

The Sunday tabloid was ordered to pay Mr Sheridan 200,000 damages. It said it planned to appeal the verdict.

Mr Sheridan won his case on a majority verdict of seven to four.

Speaking outside the Court of Session, he delivered an emotional and political speech.

He said: "We have over the last five weeks taken on one of the biggest organisations on the planet with the biggest amount of resources to pay for the most expensive legal teams to throw nothing but muck against me, my wife and my family.

"Today's verdict proves working class people can differentiate the truth from the muck.

"The working class people on the jury have done a service to the people of Scotland and delivered a message to the standard of journalism the News of the World represents.

"They are liars and they have proved they are liars."

He said he could not have conducted the case without the "loyalty and support" of his family and "thousands of working class people".

'Prayers answered'

He said he was looking forward to spending some quality time with his 14-month-old daughter Gabrielle.

Mr Sheridan compared the win to Gretna FC beating Real Madrid in Spain on penalties.

The verdict was initially met with a stunned silence in the courtroom before relatives of Mr Sheridan wept.

His wife Gail hugged her husband for almost a minute in the court after the verdict was delivered.

The MSP's mother Alice said afterwards: "Our prayers have been answered."

Speaking outside the court Bob Bird, editor in Scotland of the News of the World, said he was "absolutely astonished" at the outcome.

He added: "This result suggests that 18 independent witnesses, came to this court and committed monstrous acts of perjury.

"We simply cannot accept that is what happened.

"On that basis, we will be lodging an appeal against this verdict.

"And the basis for that appeal is that today's verdict was perverse."

Honesty and integrity

Scottish Socialist Party (SSP) Leader Colin Fox, who gave evidence against his comrade, is due to make a statement.

Witnesses for the News of the World told lurid stories of Mr Sheridan allegedly visiting a Manchester sex club, having sex with a former prostitute and being in a threesome.

SSP colleagues said party minutes showed Mr Sheridan had admitted visiting the sex club.

MSP Caroline Leckie said the case was about a man with a reputation for honesty and integrity being shown to be a hypocrite and liar.

Other party members denied the existence of the minute.

Mr Sheridan broke down as he told the jury he would never betray his wife.

Gail Sheridan said she trusted her husband and had never been so proud of him.


SOURCE

BBC News, "Sheridan victory in court battle", 4 August 2006.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/5246378.stm


FURTHER READING

BBC News, "'Campaign to discredit' Sheridan", 26 July 2006.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/glasgow_and_west/5216748.stm
    Socialist MSP Tommy Sheridan has been the victim of a "fairly relentless campaign to discredit" him from within his own party, a jury has heard.
    The claim was made by Scottish Socialist Party member Professor Mike Gonzalez when asked if he was aware of anyone trying to undermine Mr Sheridan.
    Prof Gonzalez said: "I have certainly become aware, since all these events occurred, of a hostility towards you."
    Mr Sheridan has launched a defamation action against the News of the World.
    Prof Gonzalez, 63, of the University of Glasgow, said the hostility had come from "a group of people on the executive committee".
    ...
  Later, another senior SSP official told the court a faction in the party was "out to get" Mr Sheridan.
    ...
    Mr Arnott said: "The first thing he said to me was: 'Tommy Sheridan is finished'.
    ...


BBC News, "Sheridan 'call girl' breaks down", 13 July 2006.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/glasgow_and_west/5176730.stm
    An ex-call girl who said she had an affair with former Scottish Socialist leader Tommy Sheridan broke down in the witness box and swore at his lawyer.
    Fiona McGuire, 32, told a court she was put under intense pressure by the News of the World before it published an account of the relationship in 2004.
    ...
    "She also said she had since attempted suicide, been attacked, escaped abduction and had her car vandalised."
"I was with Douglas Wight and I shoved a heap of pills into my mouth and he grabbed me and had to make me sick."
    "She said a man had been charged in connection with the attempted abduction and expressed disbelief that Mr Henderson had linked her to another journalist when she had earlier expressed concern about the reporter's identity being made public."
    ...


Scottish Parliament, "Business Bulletin No. 86 / 2004: Section F", 20 March 2004.
http://www.scottish.parliament.uk/business/businessBulletin/bb-04/bb-05-20f.htm
    S2M-1343 Tommy Sheridan: Israel and War Crimes-
    That the Parliament notes the continued illegal occupation of Palestinian territories by the Israeli Army and the indiscriminate killing of men, women and children within the occupied territories and the deliberate destruction of over 3,000 Palestinian homes over the last three-and-a-half years; condemns the most recent killings of 19 Palestinians by the Israeli army, including 15-year-old Asmaa al Mughayer and her 13-year-old brother Ahmed who were shot through the head by Israeli Army snipers while on the roof of their home; believes, given the indiscriminate killings and deliberate demolition of so many Palestinians' homes, that the Israeli Government, and Prime Minister Ariel Sharon, in particular, are guilty of war crimes through breach of Article 53 of the Geneva Convention, which states that "Any destruction by the Occupying Power of real or personal property belonging individually or collectively to private persons, or to the State, or to other public authorities, or to social or cooperative organizations, is prohibited, except where such destruction is rendered absolutely necessary by military operations"; believes that Israel's actions are not justified military operations and therefore condemns its actions as unacceptable war crimes; agrees to communicate its disgust over the Israeli Government's actions to the British Prime Minister and directly to the Israeli embassy, and further agrees to investigate a Scottish parliamentary boycott of Israeli goods in protest at their actions.
    ...


BBC News, "Activists in May Day rallies", 1 May 2002.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/1961178.stm
    Hundreds of people have taken to the streets of two Scottish cities for peaceful May Day rallies.
Protesters in Edinburgh demonstrated against the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories and were joined by MSPs Lloyd Quinan of the Scottish National Party and Scottish Socialist Party Leader Tommy Sheridan.
    Campaigner Aamer Anwar said: "We are aiming for a peaceful march against violence shown by Israel and the West."
    The protesters held a rally outside the American Consulate and then marched to the Scottish Parliament on The Mound.
    There was strict security and a minor confrontation with police when demonstrators tried, unsuccessfully, to march through parts of central Edinburgh.
    Officers told them they could not do so for safety reasons.
    ...
    A senior police officer with the march said the Glasgow event had traditionally remained jovial and trouble-free.
    The parade passed through the streets where shoppers and city workers stood and watched.
    In a witty exchange, office workers peering from open windows were urged to "resign" by the anti-capitalist activists below.
    The protest ended with a rally at Kelvingrove Park.


BBC News, "Sheridan in challenge to witness", 18 July 2006.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/glasgow_and_west/5191056.stm
    A woman who said she saw Tommy Sheridan taking part in a sex threesome has denied concocting the claims for money.
    Under cross-examination by the MSP, who has begun representing himself after sacking his legal team [for reasons that the mass media does not report, but most people can probably imagine in this type of case], Anne Colvin, 54, said she had been paid 1,000.
    ...

"The Insider" mailing list article, 04 August 2006.

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Tags: Tommy Sheridan, Scottish MP, campaign, discredit, Israel, lobby, Jews, Zionist, plot, anti-Israel, anti-capitalist, Communist, Capitalism, campainer, activist, smear-campaign, , conspiracy theories.

 
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