Lord McAlpine drops defamation claims against Twitter users with fewer than 500 followers
Thursday 21 February 2013
Lord McAlpine has announced that he is dropping defamation claims against Twitter users with fewer than 500 followers who wrongly named him as a paedophile, instead asking for a charitable donation.
The Tory peer, who has already received six-figure payouts from the BBC and ITV, said he wanted to draw the "unfortunate episode" to a close.
He has now written to Twitter users with fewer than 500 followers, asking them to make a voluntary donation of £25 to the BBC's Children In Need as soon as possible.
Lord McAlpine was mistakenly implicated by Newsnight's November 2 broadcast in a paedophile ring which targeted children at a care home in Wrexham. His name was then widely mentioned on the internet, including Twitter.
The former Tory politician reached a £185,000 settlement with the BBC after it broadcast the botched Newsnight investigation, as well as receiving £125,000 from ITV and Phillip Schofield relating to a This Morning programme broadcast on November 8.
He is also pursuing Sally Bercow, wife of Commons Speaker John Bercow, over comments she made on the microblogging site and said today that his lawyers would be focusing on that.
In a statement today, Lord McAlpine said he would cover all administration costs for the low-circulation Twitter libels.
"Whilst I reached a settlement last year with both the BBC and ITV, I would like to now draw this unfortunate episode, forced into my life, to a close," he said.
"I have dropped all claims against those tweeters with less than 500 followers, in return for a very modest donation to BBC Children In Need, which funds 2,600 projects supporting disadvantaged children and young people in the UK.
"I have requested that my lawyers, RMPI LLP, focus on the action against Sally Bercow and that damages arising from this are donated to a charity of her choice. I am not intending to make any further comment on this matter."
- 1 Finland schools: Subjects scrapped and replaced with 'topics' as country reforms its education system
- 2 The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
- 3 #FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
- 4 Scientists have discovered a simple way to cook rice that dramatically cuts the calories
- 5 Zayn Malik quits One Direction: Hundreds of workers request compassionate leave following band member's exit
Germanwings captain Patrick Sondenheimer tried to break into locked cockpit door 'with an axe' as plane was descending
Amanda Knox murder conviction: Italian court overturns verdict for US student and Raffaele Sollecito in the killing of Meredith Kercher
Saudi Arabia says it won't rule out building nuclear weapons
The battle for the Middle East's future begins in Yemen as Saudi Arabia jumps into the abyss
#FreeTheNipple: Women in Iceland bare breasts in solidarity with trolled student
Nigel Farage brands LGBT activists 'filth' and 'scum' and accuses them of scaring away his children after they invade his local pub
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
JK Rowling responds to fan tweeting she 'can't see' Dumbledore being gay
Russia threatens Denmark with nuclear weapons if it tries to join Nato defence shield
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Germanwings plane crash live: Co-pilot Andreas Lubitz wanted to 'do something people would remember him for'
£32000 - £38000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A successful accountancy practice in...
£18000 - £23000 per annum + Uncapped commission: SThree: Does earning a 6 figu...
£18000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A challenging opportunity for a...