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Cllr. Ahmed Khan named as defendant!

with 12 comments

South Tyneside Independent Alliance councillor is Doe 1 in US court case!

Shields Gazette report today says of the anti-SLAPP  (Strategic Lawsuits against Public Participation) motion:

It claims that Coun Khan is the target of their 2009 lawsuit – despite there being no named defendants

The San Mateo District Court files say (search for case number CIV482779):





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Written by curly

July 21, 2011 at 8:11 pm

12 Responses

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  1. He claims there is no evidence to suggest that he’s Mr. Monkey so why bother accepting all of these offers of freebie lawyers. If there’s no evidence why doesn’t he just let the plaintiffs do their worst to prove the case?

    Hasn’t he cost us rate payers legal fees in the past?

    G. Thompson

    July 21, 2011 at 8:26 pm

  2. how much has this cost the us the taxpayer!
    perhaps someone should ask under the freedom of information act for the bills applicable to this case going back before they took it to america
    i think it could be the cost of a couple of social workers


    July 21, 2011 at 9:41 pm

  3. These are fair points, but I support the investigation and the STC action, not least, and Cllr Potts makes a valid point, because not one of the critics condemns the vile, occasionally threatening, damaging personally harmful nature of most of the blogs complained of in the STC civil claim which has alreadybeen described in detail on this blog site. The alleged defendant seems to believe that allegedly false/defamatory accusations about the sexual and social behaviour of fellow councillors is legitimate free speech and fair criticism of them in their role as local politicians, that is bunkum. He courts sympathy and support, and would be deserving of such support, if the blog which he appears to champion had featured fair, reasonable corroborated factual criticism eg that Councillor X did not respond to constituent’s enquiries, never attended meetings, was rude to Officers and colleagues etc.SLAPP actions are usually employed by large organisations trying to stifle, frighten and threaten legitimate critics eg an environmental group publicly expressing concerns about allegedly damaging safety shortcuts being condoned by the corporate management of a large chemical company, hardly the case here. Why no outcry equivalen to this regarding the arrest, and, in one case prosecution of two persons under s127 of The Communications Act 2003 for one off relatively harmless tweets (see previous blogs).


    July 21, 2011 at 10:29 pm

  4. The more I read about SLAPPs and anti’s, it appears to me that this legal action emblazoned over the “Gazette” should not succeed, if the alleged defendant is responsible for the content of the offending blog.The aptly described “vile” content of the offending blog would not be regarded as an exercise of what is described as “free speech” it is offensive, threatening, harmful and intimidating; ironically Californian anti SLAPP legislation is designed to protect those exercising their right of critical and analytical free speech from intimidatory lawsuits by powerful organisations trying to frighten them into silence.There may be ongoing and legitimately critical issues regarding the performance and conduct of a councillor, but he/she should have protection from intrusive, insulting, potentially defamatory, even maliciously false blogs/tweets concerning their private life.


    July 22, 2011 at 9:12 am

  5. Wikipedia states:

    A strategic lawsuit against public participation (SLAPP) is a lawsuit that is intended to censor, intimidate and silence critics by burdening them with the cost of a legal defense until they abandon their criticism or opposition. [1]

    The typical SLAPP plaintiff does not normally expect to win the lawsuit. The plaintiff’s goals are accomplished if the defendant succumbs to fear, intimidation, mounting legal costs or simple exhaustion and abandons the criticism. A SLAPP may also intimidate others from participating in the debate. A SLAPP is often preceded by a legal threat. The difficulty, of course, is that plaintiffs do not present themselves to the Court admitting that their intent is to censor, intimidate or silence their critics. Hence, the difficulty in drafting SLAPP legislation, and in applying it, is to craft an approach which affords an early termination to invalid abusive suits, without denying a legitimate day in court to valid good faith claims.

    Which is a very odd position to take when you are campaigning in favour of free speech!


    July 22, 2011 at 9:46 am

  6. It is STC, who are the alleged SLAPPers, Khan is the anti- SLAPPer, hence STC are Goliath and Khan is David with his slingshot.


    July 22, 2011 at 10:17 am

  7. It appears that at several case management hearings the STC attorneys informed the .San Mateo court that no defendants had been identified, we can only deduce from the turn that events have taken that STC’s investigations have presumably uncovered evidence that Khan is a viable defendant, thus provoking his countering actions. In civil proceedings it is not always necessary for either the parties to the proceedings or their lawyers to attend every hearing about procedural matters.This blog often features reasonable and well argued criticisms of STC and Councillors, noone in their right mind would pursue action against Curly and his contributors; we do not have to stoop to vile abuse and ourageous defamatory fantasies in order to make a point.


    July 23, 2011 at 9:29 am

    • The contradictions in Cllr. Khan’s position are really quite astounding, having spent months berating The Shields Gazette and its editor, and advising people to buy The Chronicle, all of a sudden he pleads for us to buy The Gazette again! After months pleading and campaigning on behalf of freedom of speech he then engages a US Attorney to apply a method well known for suppressing freedom of speech! Having spent months criticising the council’s expenditure on this matter he now risks increasing it further. Having spent months criticising others for not personally funding a legal action he then does exactly the same thing. All the while neither he nor the Independent Alliance Leader, or any of their remaining councillors have uttered a single word of condemnation against the authors of the numerous blogs that carried the allegedly libellous material – why should that be?


      July 23, 2011 at 10:17 am

  8. Fair comment, Curly, but he is pursuing an anti SLAPP action, it is his contention that it is STC who are pursuing what might be characterised as a SLAPP action designed to discourage freedom of speech i.e “Mr Monkey” blog; this raises the thought that, regardless of the extent of his involvement with the notorious primate, or not, as the case may be, he regards the sort of vile allegedly false and defamatory content of the blog as a legitimate use of freedom of speech. One wonders how he would react if he and his family were subjected to similar treatment. His sparring partner publishes some hard hitting tweets,but nothing like the content of the Monkey blog, and, in fairness, the allegations regarding creditworthiness and business acumen, have never been challenged in any formal or legal sense.Californian anti SLAPP legislation was designed to protect the rights of citizens and groups to express critical opinions and publish/ broadcast information about, for example, malpractices, or deceptive conduct by a powerful 3rd party, which could attract what was described as a SLAPP action by said poiwerful party. A group of parents might discover that a toy was unsafe and injurious to their children, then form a consumer group to campaign for its withdrawl from sale or substantial modification and retesting; MEGA TOY INC might try to suppress them by suing for defamation, even though the parents were acting in a well intentioned responsible manner by publicising their opinions and experiences and cocerns about the toy. Anti SLAPP legislation gives them a legal avenue to challenge MEGA TOYS INC (hypothetical company).


    July 23, 2011 at 1:10 pm

  9. The twit(ters) are active again, the lawyers acting for both sides must be tearing their hair out, because of some of their client’s refusal to shut up. Best advice whether proceedings are civil, as in this case, or criminal, is say, write or tweet/blog as little as possible; deny liability or culpability, and say that your legal team is dealing with the matter, follow the example, in this case, of STC.


    July 29, 2011 at 7:53 am

  10. Monkey is about to be hung


    July 31, 2011 at 6:05 pm

    • Would that lead to a distinction that we can share with Hartlepool Sid?
      Anyway, I thought we weren’t supposed “to tell Sid”, or have you stopped selling British Gas shares now? 🙂


      July 31, 2011 at 8:53 pm

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