nebraska wrote:There seems to be an expectation here that Johnny will win if the case goes to trial. Unfortunately, being right does not always mean you will win a case. It is always a big gamble. A settlement would be a sure thing.
Ruby Begonia wrote: . . . He needs his name cleared and in such a way that it reaches the tiniest corners of media. I hope this goes to trial and JD wins the initial amount plus major damages. News Corp is currently trying to overturn the court's decision, but Geoffrey Rush won his defamation suit vs The Telegraph and was awarded the initial amount requested plus $2.9 million in damages. I think Johnny has been harmed much more than Geoffrey. The money could help pay his legal expenses, which must now be in the millions.
You are right about one thing for sure, nebraska: right does not always mean you will win a case.
However, given all the pertinent, sworn and authenticated evidence Johnny has submitted and witnesses he can call upon, I think the extended visual and opportunity for public scrutiny a trial provides would work in Johnny’s favor. Further, the real life effort to establish defamation - in this case trying to prove a negative - is as safe a bet as anyone could possibly hope for: he is not
a wife beater, was never
the abusive party in the marriage, and, indeed, Johnny was the victim. The information was out there for any writer, journalist, or reporter worth a damn to find, read, and realize their accusation could not be verified. It should never have been printed. Arrogant b——ds went ahead anyway and as a result an innocent man has been running a no-holds-barred, harrowing media gauntlet for the past four years of his life.
On the other hand, the only sure thing about a settlement is there is some sort of resolution to the lawsuit. But, I would argue, in this particular instance it is the one avenue where justice is least likely to make an appearance. As I mentioned somewhere earlier in this thread, I don’t think Johnny has been well-served in one crucial aspect of the settlements he has been a party to the last few years: the terms of the agreements were not always made public and even when they were, the media chose to undermine Johnny at every turn. In fact, related articles have often suggested Johnny settled in order to avoid the release of “more damaging” evidence! The horror of the “divorce settlement”, riddled with lies and, unbelievably, hidden evidence, just escalated the impact of myriad forces working against Johnny; in the TMG lawsuit, most people still don’t realize Johnny mopped the floor with TMG - and rightly so - even though the parties “settled”; the Rocky fiasco during the City of Lies
filming was “settled” but the damage to Johnny’s reputation was done, his widely perceived inappropriate on-set behavior lingers to this day, and no public outrage on his behalf ensued.
As Ruby Begonia has said, Johnny needs his name cleared. Settlement or jury trial, Johnny’s name must be cleared. But cleared in such a way that every media resource, seedy tabloid or epitome of journalistic respectability, roars the decision and prints the verdict/settlement terms again and again if need be. Alone. Front page. As someone said yesterday, “above the fold.” Camera shot of the court order/settlement regardless of the number of pages needed. No reinterpretation by the experts for the masses. A sincere apology would be welcome, but for rags like The SUN and columnists like Mr. Wootton, the author of the offending piece, it would likely be spit out with nary a shudder. Johnny didn’t ask for much - 200,000£ - clearly monetary compensation was not the driving force behind his suit. BUT he did request “an injunction restraining the paper from continuing to publish allegations of spousal abuse” AND “damages
to be assessed by the court”. The latter is where some semblance of justice can - and must - be wrought. And it is precisely this award, these damages
, if honestly and thoroughly assessed, that could send out the needed message. Big numbers with dollar signs speak very loudly and need little interpretation, by either side.