‘SLAPP victim’ reports top libel firm to SRA

A former Conservative MP who saw off a high-profile defamation action brought by a party donor has said she will complain to the Solicitors Regulation Authority about the conduct of libel specialist Carter-Ruck, the firm instructed against her.

Court of Appeal judges yesterday refused permission for businessman Mohamed Amersi to appeal against a judgment which found he had ‘exhausted’ any defamation claim he might have.

In a statement following the Court of Appeal’s written judgment, Charlotte Leslie said it was ‘hard to believe’ the ‘fundamental flaws’ in the case against her ‘would not have been obvious to the experienced legal eyes of Amersi’s law firm, Carter-Ruck’.

Leslie said she was ‘shocked’ by the firm’s conduct and would be making a complaint to the SRA. Carter-Ruck said it rejected any suggestion of misconduct.

Leslie added: ‘We believe that Carter-Ruck has knowingly conducted a series of abusive legal cases against us on their client’s behalf since early 2021. Carter-Ruck continued to pursue the libel claim despite the warning issued on 28 November last year to solicitors, by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, over abusive litigation, including so-called SLAPPs (strategic litigation against public participation).

‘We are making a complaint to the SRA about the firm’s conduct, which we believe has brought the legal profession into disrepute. We would also like to thank all our superb lawyers – the best of their profession – for bringing us to this unequivocal victory.’

A spokesperson for Carter-Ruck said: ‘As you will appreciate, it would not be appropriate for us to comment on client matters. Suffice it to say we strongly reject any suggestion of misconduct.’