TALK OF THE TRADE : Leeson story is a big deal

"You must hear my Nick's side of the story," Lisa Leeson proclaimed on Friday, via the Daily Mirror. The words "but only for something in return" did not appear beside it, writes Vicky Ward. We all assumed a deal would have been struck by the time Mrs Leeson told her version of the story.

That may be only a tiny part of the Leesons' media-earning potential. Max Clifford, the publicist, is (unofficially, he says) on the case. There may be book deals, international magazine interviews and film rights for years to come.

A lot depends on whether Nick Leeson goes on trial and is convicted of forgery. The British media will of course be careful not to be seen as giving comfort to law-breakers. The Press Complaints Commission enforces the portion of the code of conduct which states that payments should not be paid, directly or indirectly, to witnesses, potential witnesses in criminal proceedings, or people engaged in crime. But with a story made for Hollywood, international market rules will probably prevail.

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