A judge in London on Thursday threw out a lawsuit by former U.S. President Donald Trump, accusing former British spy Christopher Steele of making “shocking and scandalous claims” that were false and harmed his reputation.
The court called Mr. Trump’s suit data protection claims over false allegations that he took part in “perverted” sex acts and gave bribes to Russian officials. A High Court judge dismissed the case.
The former US president sued Orbis Business Intelligence, a consultancy founded by former MI6 officer Christopher Steele, and sought compensation for distress.
Mr Steele, who previously ran the Secret Intelligence Service’s Russia desk, was the author of the falsified Steele dossier, which included allegations Mr Trump had been “compromised” by the Russian security service, the FSB. Mr.Trump denied them, and they were later proven false.
At a hearing in London last year, the court was told Mr. Trump was bringing his case over two memos in the dossier, which claimed he had taken part in “sex parties” while in St Petersburg and engaged in “golden showers” with prostitutes in Moscow.
But lawyers for Orbis asked for Mr. Trump’s claim to be thrown out, telling the court it was “brought for the purpose of harassing Orbis and Mr. Steele and pursuing longstanding grievances.”
He brought it because Steele brought false claims against him.
In a judgment on Thursday, Mrs. Justice Steyn said: “In my view, there are no compelling reasons to allow the claim to proceed to trial in circumstances where, whatever the merits of the allegation that the personal data are inaccurate may be, the claim for compensation and/or damages… is bound to fail.”
She said: “In reality, the claimant is seeking court findings to vindicate his reputation in circumstances where he has not been able to formulate any viable remedy which he would have a real prospect of obtaining, or which would itself be of any utility and having chosen to allow many years to elapse – without any attempt to vindicate his reputation in this jurisdiction – since he was first made aware of the dossier, including the memoranda, on 6 January 2017.”
The dossier, which consists of more than a dozen memos, was produced by Orbis in 2016 ahead of the US election. It was leaked to and published by BuzzFeed in 2017 after Donald Trump became President.
THE ATTORNEY FOR STEELE
Hugh Tomlinson KC, for Mr Trump, described the allegations in the memos – which also included a claim the 77-year-old had “defiled” a bed previously used by former president Barack Obama and his wife – as “egregiously inaccurate”.
Dismissing the claim, Mrs Justice Steyn said that the “mere fact” that Orbis had held copies of the memos could not cause Mr Trump distress.
“Mere storage of the memoranda by the defendant cannot sensibly be said to have had any impact on the claimant – if he was even aware of it – not least in circumstances where the memoranda are on the internet,” the judge added.
During the hearing, Antony White KC, for the consultancy, said the case had been brought to pursue a “vendetta” against Orbis and the former MI6 officer.
Ignoring the defamatory lies, the attorney claimed the case was to resolve Mr. Trump’s so-called animus against Mr. Steele. White then claimed Mr. Trump always files frivolous, meritless claims to vex and harass.
We wonder how Antony would feel if he was defamed with lies by a Russian oligarch and provided by Steele, who knew the oligarch was a Russian liar. He also knew Hillary Clinton, who was running against Donald Trump, paid for it.