Defamation Claims made in 2019

The request was refused by Ministry of Justice.

Dear Ministry of Justice,

This is a Freedom of Information request. It is based on my request of 29 June 2020, MoJ reference number 200629027, which was refused under s.12(1) of the Freedom of Information Act 2000. This new request is designed to avoid similar rejection.

The 'Royal Courts of Justice Annual Tables -2019' data was published on 4th June 2020 as part of the Civil Justice Statistics Quarterly: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics...

The MS Excel Spreadsheet '2019_RCJ_tables.xlsx' contains several tables of information.
Table Table 3.20 — Queen's Bench Division — gives the number of defamation (libel and slander) claims started in the High Court in 2019 as 323 (cell E33).

The 'public search' function on the HMCTS e-filing portal (https://efile.cefile-app.com) reveals only 306 cases on the QB Media and Communications list for 2019, many dozens of which relate to privacy, data protection, and injunctions (i.e. not defamation, slander, or malicious falsehood).

There is large discrepancy, therefore, between publically available case numbers listed as defamation/malicious falsehood, and the number given in the RCJ statistics. Moreover, the RCJ figure of 323 is inordianately high compared to previous years (75% above the 10 year average). I am wondering, therefore, whether the figure is correct, and would like to see the calculations MoJ/HMCTS officials made to arrive at this figure.

I have contacted the Ministry of Justice press office to query the figure, but they could not answer it. I have also sent messages to the statistics.enquiries email address (25 June 2020) and the CAJS email address (7 September 2020) and received no response.

My previous request asked for "case details (case number, parties)." This was refused under s.12(1). I accept that appending the parties names to a list of cases could take time beyond the approved limit, which is why I am not appealing the earlier decision. However, I know some of the information requested must have already been compiled, in order to arrive at the figure of 323 cited in the RCJ Annual Tables document.

So instead, please supply only the list of case numbers that make up the figure of 323.

Many thanks.

Yours faithfully,

Robert Sharp

LondonKILO, Ministry of Justice

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Dear Robert Sharp,

 

Please see the attached acknowledgement to your request (our reference
200921014)

 

Knowledge and Information Officer
Knowledge and Information Liaison Unit | London Regional Support Unit |
3^rd Floor | First Avenue House | 42-49 High Holborn | London | WC1V 6NP |
DX160010 Kingsway 7

Web: [1]www.gov.uk/hmcts

 

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LondonKILO, Ministry of Justice

1 Attachment

Dear Robert Sharp,

 

Please see the attached response to your request (our reference 200921014)

 

Knowledge and Information Officer
Knowledge and Information Liaison Unit | London Regional Support Unit |
3^rd Floor | First Avenue House | 42-49 High Holborn | London | WC1V 6NP |
DX160010 Kingsway 7

Web: [1]www.gov.uk/hmcts

 

Unless a higher marking is specified please treat this email as: OFFICIAL

Click [2]here to provide some feedback and help improve our service.

[3]Here is how HMCTS uses personal data about you

 

[4]Coronavirus (COVID-19): courts and tribunals planning and preparation

 

 

 

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Dear LondonKILO,

I’m writing in follow up to my FOI request, which should have been responded to by 19 October.

When might I expect a response?

Yours sincerely,

Robert Sharp

LondonKILO, Ministry of Justice

Thank you for your email. Please accept this auto-response as confirmation
that your request has been received. We endeavour to provide a response to
all emails as soon as possible within 5 working days unless marked urgent

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LondonKILO, Ministry of Justice

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Dear Robert Sharp, please see attached e-mail sent on the 16th of Oct with our response also attached.

Thank you.

Knowledge and Information Officer
Knowledge and Information Liaison Unit | London Regional Support Unit | 3rd Floor | First Avenue House | 42-49 High Holborn | London | WC1V 6NP | DX160010 Kingsway 7
Web: www.gov.uk/hmcts

Unless a higher marking is specified please treat this email as: OFFICIAL
Click here to provide some feedback and help improve our service.

Here is how HMCTS uses personal data about you
Coronavirus (COVID-19): courts and tribunals planning and preparation

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