Lord McAlpine Wins £125,000 from ITV for Philip Schofield Child Sex Smears
By Dominic Gover | November 23, 2012 2:01 AM EST
Tory grandee Lord McApline has won £125,000 compensation from ITV over paedophile smears made live on air by This Morning presenter Philip Schofield.
McAlpine took action after being linked online with sexual offences against children at a Wales care home. Schofield handed prime minister David Cameron a list of names of alleged sex offenders in the Conservative Party, which he gleaned from the web.
During the handover, the text of Schofield's note was partially visible to This Morning's millions of viewers, further fuelling speculation as to the names he had found.
As well as agreeing a settlement, the broadcaster has issued an unreserved apology for the incident, saying: "ITV and Phillip Schofield have now reached agreement with Lord McAlpine to settle his libel claim, made in relation to the This Morning programme broadcast on November 8, 2012.
"ITV and Phillip Schofield apologise unreservedly to Lord McAlpine, have agreed the terms of a statement to be made in open court, and have agreed to pay him damages of £125,000 and his legal costs."
McAlpine has already agreed a £185,000 package with the BBC, following the Newsnight programme which triggered the speculation against him by alleging that a senior political figure during the Margaret Thatcher era had abused children at the Bryn Estyn care home.
The ITV settlement is reportedly less than McAlpine was seeking. However the peer's lawyer, Andrew Reid, said he was "pleased" with ITV's admission that it was wrong and called the settlement "pragmatic."
Reid told the BBC: "We accepted the legal argument that the Newsnight programme had effectively set the pot - it was already boiling at that point.
"The Schofield stunt added fuel to the fire that was already there and we had to take that into account."
A spokesman for McAlpine told The Times: "This was also done in broad daylight in a premeditated way in front of the prime minister. It was that programme that prompted Lord McAlpine to come out with his statement."
Yet more lawsuits could follow ITV, as McAlpine is targeting Twitter users who defamed him by innuendo, including the wife of House of Commons speaker, Sally Bercow, and TV funny-man Alan Davis. In the aftermath of the storm, Bercow appears to have vanished from the micro-blogging site.
Tweeters with less than 500 followers will be asked to make a charity donation, rather than paying McAlpine a settlement.
To contact the editor, e-mail:
Join the Conversation
- Kate Middleton Pregnancy Update: Duchess Has ‘Strict Style Guide,’ Expected To Wear Winter Wardrobes During Pregnancy
- Bizarre Sex Abuse: Man Licks Woman’s Foot in Canada, Runs Away With Her Shoe
- US Police Officers Shoot 12-Year-Old Child ‘By Mistake’
- Woman Charged For Leaving Her Baby in Drain in Australia Needs 'Compassion' Says Social Worker
- New Zealand Pre-schooler Suffers Attack For Wearing A Jewish Cap; Anti-Semitic Act Condemned
- Kobani ISIS Fighter Sends Out Desperate Message For Prayers And Support: Euphoria Turns Into Desperation As Kurds Advance
- Chris Algieri’s Battered Face Trends On Social Media
- Home Depot Early Black Friday 2014 Sale Up To Nov. 29, 2014 Includes Special Buys On Appliances Such As Samsung Refrigerators, Whirlpool Electric Ranges And Hoover Vacuum Cleaners
- Black Friday Sale 2014 Deals From Amazon On Smartphones, TVs, Headsets And More
- Microsoft Band Runs Out Of Stock, But Offers $10 Gift Voucher To Wait-Listed Customers
- Andrew Robb Asks Obama Not to ‘Lecture’ Australia on Climate Change
- Highest Paid NBA Players 2014: NBA Stars Who Earn More Than LeBron James