Barry George accepts libel payout over claims

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The Independent Online

Barry George, who was cleared of murdering the television presenter Jill Dando, accepted substantial undisclosed libel damages yesterday over claims he had pestered women he was obsessed with.

Mr George, who was acquitted of the crime after a retrial in August last year, was at London's High Court with his sister Michelle Diskin, who led the campaign to prove his innocence after his 2001 conviction, for the brief hearing before Mr Justice Eady.

Mr George said: "I am pleased that the matter between myself and News Group Newspapers has been amicably settled following a successful mediation without the need for litigation." His counsel, Gordon Bishop, told the court that Mr George had brought the action over a number of articles in The Sun and the News Of The World between August and November last year. He said News Group had withdrawn the "false allegations" and apologised for making them. It had agreed to pay him substantial damages and all his legal costs.

News Group's solicitor, Ben Beabey, said: "The defendant takes this opportunity to correct matters and to apologise to Mr George for any hurt and distress he has felt."