14 October 2009

Trafigura and Carter-Ruck come a cropper over injunction

I know tthat I am late to this but what the hey...

Recent events have confirmed in my mind that corporate criminals Trafigura and their legal vermin Carter-Ruck exist to give the perverts who sniff bicycle seats someone to look down on. This opinion was strengthened this week when the vile pairing managed to hit another new low when they briefly drove a coach and horses through the right of the Press to report parliamentary proceedings.

By obtaining what is known as a super injunction the corporate criminals and their legal vermin were able to prevent the Guardian from reporting on the following parliamentary question from Labour MP Paul Farrelly the justice secretary, Jack Straw:

"To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of legislation to protect (a) whistleblowers and (b) press freedom following the injunctions obtained in the High Court by (i) Barclays and Freshfields solicitors on 19 March 2009 on the publication of internal Barclays reports documenting alleged tax avoidance schemes and (ii) Trafigura and Carter-Ruck solicitors on 11 September 2009 on the publication of the Minton report on the alleged dumping of toxic waste in the Ivory Coast, commissioned by Trafigura."

Despite it being a public document the Guardian was prevented from identifying the MP who has asked the question, saying what the question is, which minister might answer it, or where the question is to be found.

The Guardian was also forbidden from saying even why it was prevented from reporting parliament. Moreover, the injunction could not be identified nor could the client identified. In fact all that the Guardian could say was that the case involved Carter-Ruck.

According to media lawyer Geoffrey Robertson QC, Lord Denning had ruled in the 1970s that "whatever comments are made in parliament" can be reported in newspapers without fear of contempt. This dates back to a ruling in relation to the identity of an officer granted anonymity by a judge on grounds of 'national security'. The Director of Public Prosecutions threatened the press might be prosecuted for contempt, but most newspapers published.

The injunction was amended yesterday and the Guardian was them able to publish details of the question.

Today Conservative MP Peter Bottomley stated that he was going to report Carter-Ruck, the law firm that acted on behalf of Trafigura, to the Law Society, saying that no lawyers should be able to inhibit the reporting of parliament.

"I will be seeking their advice on whether it is proper for any lawyer to purport or intend to inhibit the reporting of parliament," he said. "It is the job of the press to make aware to all what is known by a few. Any court action which inhibits that should be approved at a very high level, with full justifications, and in normal circumstances, should not be made in secret."

In a press release yesterday Carter-Ruck, stated “The order would indeed have prevented the Guardian from reporting on the parliamentary question which had been tabled for later this week." However, they accused the Guardian of being "highly misleading" in its reporting.

The role blogosphere and Twitter played in broadcasting this outrage is to be commended. Carter-Ruck claimed that it had not been their intention to block reporting of parliamentary proceedings but it must have been clear that this would be the case; I somehow find this very hard to believe...

Adam Tudor and his minions at Carter-Ruck might wish to consider whether defending the reputation of amoral scum like Trafigura is worth the millions they must earn from it. When you consort with criminals the shit rubs off. It is good to see that their arrogance has backfired on them in the same way that fellow shysters Schillings got two years ago over Craig Murray.

On the other hand there is a piece of shit in Chechnya called Kadyrov who I am sure could benefit from their services. That is a pair that deserve each other!

No comments: