The former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig was defamed by Whale Oil blogger Cameron Slater – a High Court judge has ruled.
But Justice Toogood has also found that Mr Craig was guilty of moderately serious sexual harassment of his former press secretary Rachel MacGregor on multiple occasions from early 2012 to 2014.
Justice Toogood has just released his 250-page judgment in the defamation case – 18 months after the trial was held.
It was one of a number of legal proceedings launched in relation to the fallout from the 2014 election campaign and Ms MacGregor’s sudden resignation.
Mr Craig sued Mr Slater for posts he made on his Whale Oil blog about Mr Craig and his relationship with Ms MacGregor.
Mr Slater counter-sued Mr Craig for statements he made in a leaflet sent out to 1.6 million households around the country in 2015.
Justice Toogood has found that Mr Slater did defame Mr Craig by making untrue statements about him.
But not all of Mr Craig’s defamation claims were successful.
Justice Toogood dismissed Mr Slater’s counter-claim.
Damages weren’t awarded because Justice Toogood said any reputational damage Mr Craig suffered resulted almost entirely from his own actions.
‘To the extent – if any – that his reputation suffered further damage because of the two defamatory statements for which I have held the defendants to be liable – I am more than satisfied that the declarations that he was defamed in that way provide adequate vindication.
‘I conclude therefore that Mr Craig is not entitled to an award of general damages to compensate him further for such damage.
Mr Craig’s remaining causes of action and his claims for damages in defamation are dismissed’ Justice Toogood said.