Michelle O’Neill wins defamation case against DUP man who said she would be sent home | Pro IQRA News

Michelle O’Neill wins defamation case against DUP man who said she would be sent home

 | Pro IQRA News

Pro IQRA News Updates.

Sinn Féin deputy leader Michelle O’Neill won a defamation case against a DUP councilor for saying she would be “sent home”.

She won a Supreme Court ruling in her lawsuit over John Carson’s social media comments.

His lawyer indicated on Thursday that Mr Carson is now set to issue an “immediate and genuine apology” at another hearing to determine the level of damages.

The defamation proceedings were issued after the post appeared on Facebook in April 2021.

Michelle O'Neill.  Photo: Jonathan Porter/Press IMichelle O'Neill.  Photo: Jonathan Porter/Press I
Michelle O’Neill. Photo: Jonathan Porter/Press I

Mr Carson, an alderman for Middle and East Antrim Borough Council, made the comments under a picture of the vice-chairman of Sinn Féin.

He subsequently apologized online, but was suspended for three months by the local government standards watchdog who deemed the remarks unreasonable and misogynistic.

In her statement of claim, lawyers for Ms O’Neill argued that the comments had a defamatory meaning by describing her as a “servile and incompetent politician”.

The post was derogatory, misogynistic, and directed at the essential features of her femininity, it was said, in addition to being motivated by personal bigotry and political gain.

It has now emerged that Ms O’Neill obtained a default judgment last December when no defense was offered in her claim.

She was scheduled to appear in the Supreme Court today to testify as part of the appropriate damages assessment for the award of judgment.

But the hearing was adjourned to allow Mr. Carson’s new legal representatives more time.

Mrs. O’Neill’s lawyer, Peter Girvan, expressed his disappointment that the DUP adviser had not been involved in the proceedings sooner.

“It’s one of those cases where a head is in the sand,” he said.

Michael Priddy, who is representing Mr Carson, has confirmed that no attempt will be made to overturn the default judgment.

“My client has been notified and accepts,” he told the court.

“There will be a prompt and genuine apology in whatever form we can agree between ourselves.”

After the hearing, Ms O’Neill’s attorney, Padraig O’Muerg, welcomed the decision not to appeal the previously obtained sentence.

He said: “The defamation of our clients was blatantly demeaning and misogynistic.

Read more

Ballymena DUP Alderman John Carson suspended due to Michel O’Neill’s suspension

“It was deliberately and maliciously published in order to harm and discredit her, and to inculcate a culture of mockery of women in politics.”