Hero Professor Paul Blackledge Given £70,000 In Damages As His Innocence Is Proven, After A Vile #MeToo Feminist Blogger Falsely Accused Him Of Rape
Paul Blackledge, a hero academic falsely accused of rape by an vile scumbag anonymous feminist blogger has been awarded £70,000 in damages by a High Court judge.
The professor in politics and ethics, was falsely accused of a series of serious sexual assaults in three articles published under a pseudonym on the BlogSpot blogging platform last year.
The High Court heard that the posts were published under the pseudonym ‘MeTooUCU’, a reference to the #MeToo movement and the University and College Union (UCU).
The articles falsely alleged Dr Blackledge, who has worked at universities in Leeds, London Northumbria and China – of rape as well as sustained bullying and the humiliation of his victims.
Mr Justice Saini awarded the five-figure sum in damages, finding the allegations were false and ‘gravely defamatory’.
The damages are likely to be symbolic as the anonymous blogger’s identity remains unknown.
He said: ‘I am satisfied on the evidence that the claimant has never committed any form of sexual harassment, sexual assault, or rape.
‘I also accept that he was devastated by these false allegations and finds the very idea of sexual violence abhorrent.’
The individual behind the website did not engage with the court or attempt to defend the allegations.
Mr Justice Saini said: ‘The defendant has used the anonymity of the internet and social media to hide.
‘The facts of this case are a striking example of how the internet and social media can be used to abuse and damage innocent individuals with apparent impunity.’
The judge said the blogger emailed Dr Blackledge’s professional contacts with the allegations as part of a ‘vindictive and relentless’ campaign over several months.
The blogger also shared the articles with other academics through an anonymous Twitter account, leading the judge to conclude they had been seen between ‘the high hundreds to low thousands’ of times.
Mr Justice Saini said the allegations would have been ‘devastating’ to Dr Blackledge’s reputation.
He continued: ‘The claimant can barely sleep from the torment of the allegations and thinks about them all the time.
‘The website and emails have caused many who were previously close to the claimant to stop speaking to him completely.
‘Others have told the claimant they would have to distance themselves from him despite telling him they did not believe the allegations.’
Mr Justice Saini awarded a total of £70,000 to Dr Blackledge for libel and harassment.
‘This substantial sum is intended to reflect and signal the total falsity of the allegations against Paul Blackledge,’ he added.
The judge also ordered that Google, which hosts BlogSpot, must take down the website with the articles.
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