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Libel Chill

So, when a rich person wins a libel case and then it turns out that they did do what they were accused of, should they have to repay the damages awarded to them? For many lawyers, the law is a only game and the winner not only gets to take all but also to keep it no matter what comes out afterwards. I've sat through enough court cases not to be fooled into confusing Law with Justice. To appeal is to risk all again on a second throw of the dice. Even if a person is telling the truth they could easily lose a libel case. Civil Law is more a matter of the depth of pocket than truth. Most sensible people do indeed cave when they get a lawyer's letter sent on behalf of a wealthy client. There have been several nasty rich people who have succeeded in silencing the truth, even threatening their own families with libel suits, and in a couple of cases have even won substantial damages because the defendant had a bad day in court. Criminals who have their convictions overturned are freed and often compensated. Unsuccessful libel defendants can have their lives and reputations ruined for life. How about when it turns out that someone who did do what was alleged but won their case that they are charged criminal perjury? With guaranteed jail time if found guilty.


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