£1m claim commuter awarded £11,000

A commuter who sued London Underground for £1 million damages after he was grabbed by an employee at a ticket barrier has won just £11,925 in compensation.

Deputy Judge Satinder Hunjan QC said that 58-year-old Leib Spektor was the victim of "inappropriate force" but his claim was "excessive and exaggerated".



Mr Spektor had passed though the barrier with his bicycle after arriving at Canada Water tube station in February 2006 when he was asked about the route he had taken, but did not reply.



The situation escalated to the point where the employee grabbed Mr Spektor, forced him backwards and bent him over the barriers.



The judge had previously ruled that London Underground Ltd was liable to compensate Mr Spektor for injuries to his neck and lower back, and for the development of a phobic anxiety disorder which stopped him going out in the dark.



Mr Spektor, of Sangley Road, Lewisham, south east London, claimed he was left significantly disabled and asked for £1,062.069 in damages while LU offered £18,000.



Assessing compensation at the High Court in London, the judge said that Mr Spektor had a significant pre-existing medical history, including disabling osteoarthritis and had not worked for ten years.



He ruled that the incident led to problems with his neck and back for three weeks and six months respectively, while cognitive behavioural therapy would give Mr Spektor an 80% chance of fully recovering from his phobia.



He reduced a sum of £268,130 claimed for pain and suffering to £8,500, and rejected other damages claims including a "substantial amount" for a two-month trip to Thailand in January 2007 for "extensive massage" and £41,917 for ready meals.



The judge said that, according to Mr Spektor, his GP had suggested Thailand on the basis it would be a good idea for him to go to a warm climate.



He added: "The claimant says that he went to Thailand because massage can be organised at a relatively modest cost.



"On the other hand, it involves, after injury of minor trauma, him travelling half the way around the world, incurring flight and hotel expenses and the cost of massage which, incidentally, is not supported by any direct medical evidence."



He also dismissed a "highly speculative" claim for £300,000 which allegedly represented a lost chance to develop game software for in-flight entertainment which Mr Spektor said Qantas was interested in.



Commenting on the action, the judge said that it might appear "completely obvious" to lawyers that one could not sustain such a large claim, particularly in the light of the medical evidence, but it was not so clear to someone like Mr Spektor who was not legally represented.



He added: "Liability was a tough battle for him in which he succeeded and this is not a slipping or tripping case - this involved inappropriate force being used by one of the employees of London Underground."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
Taste the difference: Nell Frizzell tucks into a fry-up in Jesse's cafe in east London
food + drinkHow a bike accident left one woman living in a distorted world in which spices smell of old socks and muesli tastes like pork fat
Sport
Luke Shaw’s performance in the derby will be key to how his Manchester United side get on
footballIt's not a game to lose, writes Paul Scholes
Arts and Entertainment
Don’t send in the clowns: masks and make-up conceal true facial expressions, thwarting our instinct to read people’s minds through their faces, as seen in ‘It’
filmThis Halloween, we ask what makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?
News
peopleFarage challenges 'liberally biased' comedians to 'call him a narcissist'
Arts and Entertainment
Liam and Zayn of One Direction play with a chimpanzee on the set of their new video for 'Steal My Girl'
music
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Newly Qualified Teachers - Primary, Cardiff

£95 - £105 per day + plus free travel scheme: Randstad Education Cardiff: NEWL...

Teaching Assistant

£60 - £65 per day + plus free travel scheme: Randstad Education Cardiff: Teach...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £30000 per annum + uncapped: SThree: Do you feel you sales role is li...

Maths Teacher

Negotiable: Randstad Education Hull: The JobWe are currently recruiting for an...

Day In a Page

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

Commons debate highlights growing cross-party consensus on softening UK drugs legislation, unchanged for 43 years
The camera is turned on tabloid editors in Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter'

Gotcha! The camera is turned on tabloid editors

Hugh Grant says Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter' documentary will highlight issues raised by Leveson
Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

Fall of the Berlin Wall

It was thanks to Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell
Halloween 2014: What makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?

What makes ouija boards and demon dolls scary?

Ouija boards, demon dolls, evil children and clowns are all classic tropes of horror, and this year’s Halloween releases feature them all. What makes them so frightening, decade after decade?
A safari in modern Britain: Rose Rouse reveals how her four-year tour of Harlesden taught her as much about the UK as it did about NW10

Rose Rouse's safari in modern Britain

Rouse decided to walk and talk with as many different people as possible in her neighbourhood of Harlesden and her experiences have been published in a new book
Welcome to my world of no smell and odd tastes: How a bike accident left one woman living with unwanted food mash-ups

'My world of no smell and odd tastes'

A head injury from a bicycle accident had the surprising effect of robbing Nell Frizzell of two of her senses

Matt Parker is proud of his square roots

The "stand-up mathematician" is using comedy nights to preach maths to big audiences
Paul Scholes column: Beating Manchester City is vital part of life at Manchester United. This is first major test for Luke Shaw, Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao – it’s not a game to lose

Paul Scholes column

Beating City is vital part of life at United. This is first major test for Shaw, Di Maria and Falcao – it’s not a game to lose
Frank Warren: Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing

Frank Warren column

Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing
Adrian Heath interview: Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room

Adrian Heath's American dream...

Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room
Simon Hart: Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manuel Pellegrini’s side are too good to fail and derby allows them to start again, says Simon Hart
Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

Fall of the Berlin Wall

History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

Turn your mobile phone into easy money

There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes