Thursday, January 31, 2008

Lembit calls in the lawyers

Let today's Daily Mail be a warning to you commenters who post anything remotely scurrilous about Montgomeryshure MP, Lembit Opik. According to today's Daily Mail he has called in the lawyers. The report claims that his new brief has sent a letter to his former fiancee, Sian Lloyd, demanding to see a copy of her forthcoming autobiography - before it is published. It looks as if nerve ends are jangling a touch - or could this be be an attempt to put the frighteners on! Whatever, it sounds a threatening gesture - if the Mail has got it right that is. It is reported that the demand has been rebuffed.

Last time I was talking to Sian, the working title of the book was 'Sunshine and Showers'. The title referred to in today's Mail is 'A Funny Kind of Love'. Hmmmmm. Doesn't sound good. The reason given for this legalistic activity sounds a bit odd to me. He's supposedly afraid she will refer to him as a 'Love Rat' and accuse him of breaking off the engagement to move on to one of the Cheeky Girls, who also feature 'briefsly' in today's edition. He seems very keen to ensure we all believe that Sian dumped him. Funny this. When I was young, every crashed romance saw two ex-lovers desperate to claim that they were the ones who did the 'dumping'. I suppose nobody cared about the 'sympathy vote' in those halcyon days. Anyway, I care deeply for the financial welfare of those who kindly comment on my site - so I'm deleting anything that might fall foul of a litigous lawyer on the prowl.

25 comments:

Dr. Christopher Wood said...

Ru sure that a letter only went to Sian Lloyd? I would be surprised if letters didn't also go to the publisher (if known) and other newspapers who published that Lembit dumped Sian. I seem to recall that IcWales has recently published corrections as to that issue. The target for libel suits frequently extends to publishers who typically have "deeper pockets" than the author of the libel. So the defendants can be a mixed bag and include the author, the publisher, distributors, sellers, etc.

I seem to recall Clint Eastwood successfully suing a newspaper for publishing a photo that allegedly showed he had nobly knees (wouldn't stand a chance in the USA, where the Times-Sullivan standard applies to defamations involving public figures) - New York Times Co. v. Sullivan, 376 U.S. 254 (1964). Also, I seem to recall that Teri Hatcher won substantial damages for a genuine libel which had the same story run in the USA would likely not lead to a damages payout where news organs and TV are subject to the “Public Figure” legal doctrine applies – a spin-off from the First Amendment.

Now, if Sian published through a US publisher and restricted sales to the USA (where just about no one has heard of her), she would probably be immune to a damages payout.

So Sian, publish the sterile version in the UK, and the naughtier one in the USA - on sale at international airport arrival lounges, e.g., where BA flights arrive - departure terminals too if Sian wants to be really cheeky!

Dr. Christopher Wood said...

Here it is (on icWales):

"CLARIFICATION

IN a recent column by Angharad Mair it was incorrectly stated that Lembit Opik ended his relationship with Sian Lloyd, when Ms Lloyd ended the relationship.

In addition, we have also been asked to make clear that no mention was made by Ms Lloyd of a relationship between Lembit Opik and Gabriella Irimia as a reason for ending her engagement with Mr Opik.

We are happy to clarify this."

Anonymous said...

Glyn - it isn't wise to attack your political opponents like this. It makes you look spiteful and vindictive. Turns voters off.

Glyn Davies said...

anon - You make a good point. It was just that I was amused by the article, rather than in attack mode. Anway, I'm always one to take well meant advice - so I will not be mentioning the Montgomeryshire representative on this blog again, unless its unavoidable.

Anonymous said...

Glyn, it clearly needs mentioning, because our idiot MP is running scared. He goes for bully boy tactics, but very pleased that the new Mrs Lloyd Ashman hadn't succumbed. What's he so frightened of? He's just drawing attention to his awful behaviour and, yet again, making a laughing stock of himself. Why can't Lembit Opik just shut up and go off radar? Why doesn't someone start giving him some good advice? He's in desperate need of it. Above all, what are the Lib Dems playing at? The last thing they need is another scandal so, instead of bleating weasel words about how good LO is with youngsters, why doesn't NIck Clegg exercise some control over him?????

Anonymous said...

Glyn - you have accepted wise counsel. Lembit Opik will cook his own goose without help from anyone else.

Dr. Christopher Wood said...

I wonder if Sian Lloyd's lawyers replied something like, "We refer you to the reply given in the case of Arkell v Pressdram"? *LOL*

(Arkell v Pressdram is an English case, wherein Private Eye sent a rather 'on-point' reply letter in response to a letter requesting withdrawal of an alleged libel.)

The Finch said...

Lempit is over the worst of the bad publicity now.
Things are on an even keel for him.
He is still well liked by many!

Glyn Davies said...

all - I have no more to say on this matter. No point in receiving good advice and then ignoring it.

Gareth said...

Glyn, today’s Daily Mail is the worst example of a 'slow news day' I've ever seen.

First off, as a politician you should know not to believe everything you read in the papers (including the daily mail)

Second of all the four or five paragraphs in that article where about what the cheeky girls were or were not wearing, and had no relevance to your opponent.

Glyn Davies said...

gareth - nothing to add except that I agree with you. Still amused me though. But not everyone notices when my tongue is in my cheek.

Dr. Christopher Wood said...

Glyn: I heard from a passing Harry Potter owl that there's a letter in the post to you from LO's lawyers. May I suggest you reply using the words, "I refer you to the reply given by Private Eye in the matter of Arkell v Pressdram". (Written *tongue in cheek*)

PS If you can, please mention to Sian that I can set up book selling deals at book sellers operating in US airports. Let her know that the Times-Sullivan/Public Figure defense operates here - at a guess, Britons will buy it just to put it on their shelves - bit like that Australian published book which gave rise to the phrase, "economical with the truth". (The 'Spycatcher' fiasco)

The Finch said...

Not known as the nasty party for nothing.
Some things never change.

Anonymous said...

Lembit Opik over the worst of it???!!! You have to be kidding. Come up here to Mid Wales and you'll get to learn exactly what Lembit Opik is all about. The stories doing the rounds here are all known by the national newspapers and it's only a matter of time before he's exposed.......

Glyn Davies said...

the finch - Nasty - you cannot be serious. You should hear some of the stuff that has been put out about me over the years.

Anonymous said...

Some personal comments maybe?
Let he has who has not sinned cast the first stone.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Dr. Christopher Wood said...

Anonymous (11:32:00 PM)> I've heard others say that "Rural folks (in general) know/do all kinds of stuff that city people just don't get". Disclaimer: I'm a city boyo!

cayley said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Glyn,
You asked for the some of the implications

Glyn Davies said...

all - I've had to delete more comments on this post. This blog is meant to be fun. I do take the mickey out of people, and I don't mind it coming back - but some of the comments have been offensive to Lembit and to me. I thought the advice of the first anon on this post was sensible. Mickey taking out of Lembit Opik is no longer fun - and I responded by confirming that it will no longer feature on this blog.

Anonymous said...

Think it's a great shame you no longer feel compelled to mock LO. If any politician ever deemed mocking, it's him. Did you see him on that dreadful boozy ITV programme last night? He completely lacks judgement. Why on earth would he expose himself that sort of fiasco, and do so with that awful sidekick of his? Defies belief. And yet you rather sanctimoniously claim you'll no longer take the micky. Why ever not? Surely yu are not going to take this buffoon seriously?!

Dr. Christopher Wood said...

Glyn> well you know I had to change my tune on Lembit Opik. As much as I want you to win Monty, and I hope you do because I remain in no mood to see the Lib-Dems gain or keep their seats in Wales for reasons already stated, but it is clear to me that Lembit Opik is going to shine in a very positive way. So it's kind of nice to read that it is no longer fun to take the mick out of Lembit Opik. Regardless of whether Lembit keeps his MP seat warm and/or he is seen to be damaged by Sian Lloyd's pending book, whether he breaks up for whatever reason with his current gf, even if he feels done-in - the man is going to rise like a Phoenix - he is set on certain road, a road from which he will write history. Time will reveal all that is to be revealed.

Harry James said...

Tell me,
Does Dr Wood have anything elase to do with his time beside support the ex ARESembly member?
No, thought not!

Dr. Christopher Wood said...

Harry> One has to respect such a gift that is in Lembit's being (not in his employ). I am as surprised at this turn of events as anyone. Like I wrote earlier, it is counter-intuitive. Certainly goes against a consensus view held by some especially those that despise him.

But greatness is a strange thing; its expression does not always follow human-logic. Where someone is given something precious and rare – perhaps it would do well to acknowledge it.

My feeling is that Opik is going to experience some considerable turbulence in his personal life. Perhaps he will eat humble pie (and a LOT of it), be dragged backwards and sideways through aggressive bushes, be let down and side-lined by closest friends, and trampled on like he is worthless. Regardless of all this the gift will not so much pull him through, but will simply express itself. I guess time will reveal all that is to be revealed.