Schillings Announces Stelios Win In Ryanair Libel Battle
Released on: July 20, 2010, 2:58 am
Schillings law firm has announced that Sir Stelios
Haji-loannou has won his libel battle against Michael O’Leary and
Sir Stelios, the founder of easyJet and the easyGroup business empire, accepted a
complete apology and retraction from O'Leary and Ryanair over a series of libelous
adverts in January and February this year which portrayed Sir Stelios as a "Pinocchio" character and alleged he had "hidden the truth" about easyJet’s
on-time statistics. By doing so, they alleged he had lied when he had not.
In settlement of the claim, O'Leary and Ryanair have taken out advertisements in
The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph apologising to Sir Stelios for including him in
the original advertisements.
In an agreed statement read in the High Court this morning, Sir Stelios' lawyers Schillings said: "Mr. O’Leary and Ryanair accept
that the advertisements should not have been published referring to Sir Stelios and
have made a complete offer to settle his claim. In doing so they fully accept that
Sir Stelios did not lie about the matter."
The Claim was issued after Sir Stelios' complaint about the original adverts was
met with a robust and public response from O'Leary and Ryanair. After challenging
Sir Stelios to a race around Trafalgar Square or a Sumo Wrestling Competition to
resolve the dispute, O'Leary and Ryanair have now agreed to pay damages, legal
costs and undertake not to repeat the claim in addition to the public apologies.
Commenting on the settlement Sir Stelios said: "This was an unpleasant personal
attack on me by a large public company, made worse by the way O'Leary responded to
the legal complaints. I am pleased the law provides protection to individuals like
me from unpleasant attacks on reputations from large corporations like Ryanair."
Schillings partner Rachel Atkins led the team representing Sir Stelios and was
assisted by Chris Scott. Michael Bloch QC of Wilberforce Chambers and David
Sherborne of 5RB were briefed.
Notes to Editors:
Case number: HQ10 D00565
Schillings is one of Britain's top law firms dedicated to safeguarding the
reputations of international corporations, brands, celebrities and high-profile
business people. The firm's track-record in defamation, privacy
copyright cases, as well as commercial dispute resolution and reputation management is second to none.
Defamation, privacy and copyright are at the heart of the firm's work, prompting
The Independent newspaper to call Schillings a "spectacularly efficient media law
Schillings clients include supermodel Naomi Campbell, actress Nicole Kidman, seven
times Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong, premiership footballer Wayne Rooney,
Harry Potter author JK Rowling, pharmaceuticals maker GlaxoSmithKline, steel maker
Arcelor Mittal, the Harrods Group and the London Stock Exchange.
Schillings PR contact:
41 Bedford Square
+44 (0)20 7034 9000
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