Hat tip-Rachel Ehrenfeld
By Daily Mail Reporter
Last updated at 12:32 AM on 25th July 2008
Presiding over privacy: Mr Justice Eady has handled many high-profile privacy cases in the UKSome commentators believe Mr Justice Eady is single-handedly creating a new, tougher, law of privacy in Britain.
But his actions are having the opposite effect in the U.S. – where there are plans for new laws to protect freedom of speech.
The spur was a 2004 case in which a Saudi billionaire used our courts to sue an author for libel over a book which was published in the U.S. and sold just 23 copies here.
In Funding Evil: How Terrorism is Financed and How to Stop It, the author Rachel Ehrenfeld alleged Sheikh Khalid bin Mahfouz helped fund Osama bin Laden.
Mahfouz could have sued in America, where almost all his books were sold – but instead chose Britain, where the libel laws are generally agreed to offer far less protection to writers.
Mr Justice Eady ruled against Dr Ehrenfeld, ordering her to pay £30,000 damages.
As a result, senators have introduced the Free Speech Protection Act to shield writers from libel suits brought in foreign courts.