California bans British 'libel tourism'
Arnold Schwarzenegger, the Governor of California, has brought in laws to deter celebrities and businessmen travelling to Britain to sue American-based publications in what has become known as libel tourism.
The new measures, personally signed off by Mr Schwarzenegger this week, will make judgments won against US magazines and newspapers unenforceable in California.
The legislation mirrors similar bills passed into law by the states of New York and Illinois and was strongly supported by the California Newspaper Publishers' Association.
This rash of legislation in the US follows the case of the New York-based academic, researcher and writer Rachel Ehrenfeld, who in May 2005 was ordered to pay a total of £30,000 in damages, plus costs, after being sued in the High Court in London by multimillionaire Saudi Arabian businessman Sheikh Khalid bin Mahfouz and his two sons.
They sued over Dr Ehrenfeld's book, Funding Terrorism, which was only published in the US. The High Court, which follows more libel-friendly rules than America, dealt with the case on the basis that 23 copies were sold into the English jurisdiction via the internet, and the first chapter was available on the internet.
Dr Ehrenfeld refused to respond to the litigation, and the High Court awarded summary judgment to Sheikh bin Mahfouz and his sons.
Two of the most high-profile cases of foreigners using the High Court to sue US-based publications are Cameron Diaz and Roman Polanski, who both won their libel claims.
Oscar Pistorius trial: Defence witness contradicts athlete version
Oscar Pistorius trial: The case against Oscar Pistorius – and why the prosecution claims his story doesn't add up
South Korea ferry: Captain Lee Joon-seok could face criminal investigation as over 280 remain missing
Peaches Geldof dead: Private funeral for the family and friends of the socialite will take place next week
Shropshire criminals ‘using unmanned drones and infrared cameras to find illegal cannabis farms’ – and then steal from the growers
The food poverty scandal that shames Britain: Nearly 1m people rely on handouts to eat – and benefit reforms may be to blame
US Navy christens huge $3 billion destroyer ship USS Zumwalt that appears as a fishing boat on enemy radar
Scottish independence: It is the English who should be on their knees, begging the Scots to vote ‘No’
Nigel Farage fatigue? Half of voters ‘immune’ to Ukip’s appeal
Nigel Farage on Have I Got News For You: Ukip leader ridiculed over expenses and party 'fruitcakes'
Nigel Farage: I’m taking on the status quo, and the Establishment’s fighting back
- 1 Poveglia: 'World's most haunted island' up for sale...is anyone brave enough to buy it?
- 2 The Hobbit: There and Back Again set for possible title change
- 3 Video of British Muslims dancing to Pharrell Williams's hit Happy attacked as 'sinful'
- 4 24 people applied for the 'world's toughest job', here are their interviews
- 5 Andre Johnson: Wu-Tang Clan-discovered rapper severed his penis and jumped from LA building
£150.00 per week: QA Apprenticeships: This company is a company that specializ...
£153.75 per week: QA Apprenticeships: This company is an innovative outsourcin...
£150.00 per week: QA Apprenticeships: This company has been providing on site ...
£150.00 per week: QA Apprenticeships: We've been supplying best of breed peopl...