The British Courts do not indulge themselves in bogus judgements - not even on April 1st.
This article is genuine.
A note on common law:
Both the US and the UK are common law jurisdictions. British courts will accordingly take note of US court judgements, but are not legally bound to follow them.
Occasionally, a judge will recognise that UK law is insufficient alone to secure a just result. In such circumstances the judge may be more inclined than otherwise to accept a sufficiently fair and just US ruling as providing a model and a precedent.
In its ruling, the court has indeed adopted a US court finding, so it may well be said that Simon Singh and his supporters have much to thank the US legal system for.
The grounds of appeal
In an earlier case, 7 May 2009, Justice Eady had ruled that what Simon Singh had said were assertions of fact, not expressions of opinion. If so, the defendant at trial must prove that the meanings are factually true or lose.
The appeal sought to quash that ruling. For Simon Singh it was asserted that his words were , in this blogger's words: "fair comment".
In a judgement dated April 1st - 2010, the court ruled, in paragraph 37:
"This appeal must be allowed. "
The entire judgement is available on line at:
BAILLI is the British and Irish Legal Information Institute which provides Access to Freely Available British and Irish Public Legal Information
I claim fair use under copyright laws for the extracts cited below:
This is not in sciblogs 'quote box' format, so as to conserve space.
Neutral Citation Number:  EWCA Civ 350
Case No: A2/2009/1196
IN THE COURT OF APPEAL (CIVIL DIVISION)
ON APPEAL FROM THE HIGH COURT OF JUSTICE
QUEEN'S BENCH DIVISION
MR JUSTICE EADY
 EWHC 1101 (QB)`
Royal Courts of Justice
B e f o r e :
THE LORD CHIEF JUSTICE OF ENGLAND AND WALES
THE MASTER OF THE ROLLS
LORD JUSTICE SEDLEY
British Chiropractic Association
- and -
Hearing date: Tuesday 23 February 2010
33 ... we consider that the judge erred in his approach to the need for justification by treating the statement that there was not a jot of evidence to support the BCA's claims as an assertion of fact. It was in our judgment a statement of opinion, and one backed by reasons.
34. We would respectfully adopt what Judge Easterbrook, now Chief Judge of the US Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, said in a libel action over a scientific controversy, Underwager v Salter 22 Fed. 3d 730 (1994):
"[Plaintiffs] cannot, by simply filing suit and crying 'character assassination!', silence those who hold divergent views, no matter how adverse those views may be to plaintiffs' interests. Scientific controversies must be settled by the methods of science rather than by the methods of litigation. … More papers, more discussion, better data, and more satisfactory models – not larger awards of damages – mark the path towards superior understanding of the world around us."
End verbatim quotes.
The hyperlink to the US legal site is in the original.
Congratulations to Simon Singh, and good luck with the next phase.
A tip of the hat to Josh Witten for making me aware of this news.
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Simon Singh Wins - US Law To The Rescue!
UK Libel Law Reform - A First Step