At his 2 pm press conference today former Conservative Leader Colin Craig announced that he is suing Jordan Williams, Cameron Slater and former Conservative leader John Stringer in defamation.
From Television New Zealand:
Embattled former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig claims he has been the subject of a dirty politics campaign, and is preparing to sue three people for defamation.
He’s named Jordan Williams of the Taxpayers Union, former chair of the Conservative Party John Stringer and blogger Cameron Slater as those he will be suing, seeking damages of $300,000, $600,000 and $650,000 respectively.
Mr Craig has published a booklet detailing the “dirty politics agenda” he says he’s been subjected to and how they have allegedly campaigned against him with “defamatory lies”.
Colin Craig has announced he is suing Jordan Williams, John Stringer and blogger Cameron Slater.
He says this is the first time he’s sought damages in a defamation suit but has done so due to the “serious and deliberate” smear campaign by what he terms the “dirty politics brigade”.
I have not been able to locate an onlive version of the booklet. If someone knows where it can be located please mention this in comments.
Slater has responded in a typically belligerent manner:
Mr Slater said he first heard about the defamation claim this afternoon, adding he had not been served court papers.
He said he had two words for Mr Craig: “Bring it.”
Mr Slater said he had “not one single concern” about Mr Craig’s legal action because he was capable of funding his defence and he had evidence for everything he published about Mr Craig on his website.
“New Zealand can find out once and for all what a ratbag Colin Craig is,” he said.
Mr Slater said if someone was going to stand for Parliament, it was important that the public knew about their background, especially if it contrasted with their Christian values.
Asked about Mr Craig’s allegations of “dirty politics”, Mr Slater said: “A: So what? B: Politics is dirty full-stop and if he doesn’t like it then perhaps he shouldn’t play away.”
Craig has the tenacity and the resources to see the matter through although the Atkinson v Lange principle will provide Slater some protection unless malice can be proved. But discovery of Slater’s communications with Stringer will be interesting. Unless Slater can show that he is a journalist AND that there is no public interest in removing any protection.
Update: This is the table of contents for the booklet. Would love a digital version …
Update: And here is the booklet (h/t Pascals bookie)
Update: The document itself. Read and make up your own mind.