Tuesday, 26 June 2018

Attorney General Jeremy Wright QC MP says: It was right for the prosecution of Eleanor de Freitas to go ahead.

After careful consideration, the Attorney General Jeremy Wright QC MP has decided not to order an independent inquiry into the prosecution of Eleanor De Freitas.

The request for a new inquiry or review was made by Ms De Freitas’ father David De Freitas. Ms De Freitas was charged with perverting the course of justice by the Crown Prosecution Service in 2014.

The Attorney concluded that there has already been a sufficient review of the case within the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS), including by Alison Saunders, the Director of Public Prosecution. The internal review process carefully considered the points that Mr De Freitas and others have raised, and reasonable conclusions have already been reached.

Commenting on his decision, the Attorney General said:

I recognise that this was a difficult case with a tragic outcome and I extend my deepest sympathies to Mr De Freitas and his family. However, I have carefully considered the concerns raised by Mr De Freitas and I am satisfied that this case has already been subject to extensive scrutiny within the CPS, and that it was right for the prosecution to go ahead.


Attorney General Jeremy Wright QC MP

Friday, 22 June 2018

I have a stalker called Lisa Avalos who keeps spreading lies about me on the internet.

For the last four years a woman based in America, has become obsessed with my case. Her name is Lisa Avalos. She also goes by the name "Professor Avalos", a supposed law professor.

I first spotted her at the harassment trial. She had flown all the way from Arkansas, USA to be there. On the day of the verdict, before the judgement had been handed down I saw her  giving out her business cards to the press, saying "call me". She was sure I was going to be found guilty.

She was wrong. I was found not guilty, and she has been mad ever since. Ever since I was found not guilty she has done everything to try to show the opposite.

It's like a dog that won't let go of a bone.

I later found out that she became friends with David de Freitas and his wife, and they have had several dinners together and even visited the family home in Fulham.

Since 2014 Miss Avalos seems to be constantly writing about me on the internet. It is amazing how a person can become obsessed with you and it certainly feels (from my perspective) like stalking. She visits my blog at least once per day. I know this from the i.p. logs.

She has visited this site hundreds of times. Sometimes even sending me anonymous messages, that unknown to her come from her i.p. address.

When you take the unsolicited messages, travelling 5000 miles to see me in court, and her repeated allegations about me - I would call that a clear case of stalking.  [Although I ought to say that she would probably deny any wrong doing and my assertion of stalking is my subjective opinion on the matter and has never been objectively tested by a court].

It seems I am not the only one who has made complaints about her though. A quick search on the internet will find other articles alleging that she is a liar, and a busy body in other people's cases.

This is the first time I am writing about her on my blog because to me she is a nobody who has a chip on the shoulder, so why would I want to write about such a person?

Today I am writing because Miss Avalos has again this month written about me, stating that I am guilty of the rape of Eleanor de Freitas, and this time she contacted the press trying to push her story which is based on a web of lies.

I have in the past asked her to stop writing about me, but she refuses. In America that's  called: The First Amendment aka "freedom of speech".

Professor Lisa Avalos has repeatedly stated that there was no evidence that Eleanor de Freitas lied and says that I raped her, which is totally false. Click Here to see the evidence that Lisa Avalos doesn't want anyone to know about.

For the last few days I've been dealing with a large media organisation who were proposing to re-ignite the story on me, saying they would publish "things you won't like". An exhaustive two days were spent dealing with lawyers, sending out letters and documents to the press showing them that I am in fact innocent. This is all very tiring. Especially when you've been dealing with this for four years. 

Lisa Avalos, if you're reading this please stop stalking me and move on.

Professor Lisa Avalos from the United States.

Thursday, 12 April 2018

Five days to go until the hearing, but what is my appeal about?

Recap

In 2014 David de Freitas ran a coordinated press campaign, saying that I had raped his daughter and got away with it. Mr de Freitas held himself to be an "expert" on the case, and the press believed every word he said. 

It was not the press' fault, because they reasonably believed that Mr de Freitas had told them the truth. Before he went to the press, Mr de Freitas had in his possession full details of CCTV and text message evidence that showed there was strong evidence to show his daughter had lied. But he did not tell the press about that. He concealed those facts and went even further than that. He said there was "no evidence" that his daughter had lied, which was not true at all.

Mr de Freitas press campaign started on 6th November 2014. Within a few hours of seeing the press I notified Mr de Freitas via a hand delivered letter that everything he was telling the press was wrong.

Mr de Freitas ignored everything I had to say, and continued accusing me of rape. The next day he told the Today Programme on Radio 4 at 8:10am that I had probably raped his daughter. Later that day he went on BBC News TV and said the same thing.

I continued to protest my innocence to his lawyer Harriet Wistrich. I sent 27 emails showing them the evidence that proved I was innocent. But Mr de Freitas would not stop. In fact he accused me of "harassment". [NB I was later put on trial for this supposed "harassment" and was acquitted].

A month later, on 9th December 2014, David de Freitas continued his allegations in the Guardian and Telegraph Newspapers, continuing to assert that I had probably raped his daughter. At this point I decided to sue for libel. David de Freitas was on a mission and would not stop unless restrained by a court order. 

I issued my claim in March 2015. He filed his defence a month later. In the run up to the trial my lawyers asked Mr de Freitas (via part 18 questions) if he would continue going to the press. The reply came back that he would continue going to the press and nothing could prevent him from repeating his allegations. See image below.

If Mr de Freitas had reassured me that he would stop making false accusations then I would have no reason to sue. And so the case continued to trial...

In June 2016 there was an 8 day trial. At the end of trial the judge agreed that David de Freitas press campaign was based on false statements; that were highly defamatory and caused "serious harm" to my reputation. We should have won.

But in his judgement, Warby J said it was more important for David de Freitas to have freedom of speech than to repair my reputation, even though it caused serious harm and was not true.

Judge Warby dismissed my claim and ordered me to pay David de Freitas 90% of his legal costs of around £1.4m. [NB His legal costs are high because he is represented by no win no fee lawyers, who charge double fees]. A few months later David de Freitas applied to have me bankrupted. I am still fighting bankruptcy, which is on hold pending this appeal.

And that's what the appeal is about: Freedom of Speech vs Right to Reputation. The appeal is about common sense. If you wrongly accuse someone of rape on Radio, TV, Newspapers and Online and ignore everything the innocent victim says then you ought to be held to account. Especially when you know what you are saying is not true.

The appeal will be heard at the Royal Courts of Justice on 17 and 18th April 2018. The result will then be handed down at the Judges discretion,  usually 6 to 12 months after the hearing. 


An extract from "Part 18 Questions" in July 2015, eight months after David de Freitas press campaign.

Saturday, 30 September 2017

Police to face Misconduct Hearing

Nearly five years after my complaint to the Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) the officers who investigated the rape allegations, Detective Inspector Julian King and Detective Constable Phil Dial, are facing a formal misconduct hearing.

The reason that I took out a Private Prosecution against Eleanor in the first place was that the police refused to investigate her for lying, despite there being a mountain of strong evidence.

This report is really important because it contradicts everything Mr de Freitas was saying to the press. The truth was the Police Officers did not do a proper job.

The report says the Police Officers:

1. Refused to watch CCTV evidence.
2. Never examined the telephone downloads which contained crucial text messages.
3. Never asked Ms de Freitas about inconsistencies in her story.
4. Did not speak to important witnesses.
5. "Told Mr Economou to go away and collect the evidence himself"


This was also reported by the Daily Mail, see it here. The officers will face a public misconduct hearing at a later date and more details will emerge then.


Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Good News: Appeal listed for 17 April 2018

Good news. The libel case is going to an appeal which will be heard 17-18 April 2018. Click here to see details of the appeal listing.

In June we had a short one hour hearing to lift the £400,000 condition to appeal. The judge ruled that I didn't have to pay the £400,000, but unfortunately ruled that I had to pay £120,000 as security.

Despite the good news I am grumpy about the £120,000. Quite frankly this condition to pay £120,000 to appeal is deeply unfair. In the last 5 years I have paid out over £1m in legal fees trying to defend my name. My flat is mortgaged up to the hilt and I have pretty much run out of money. I am going for broke on this now.

Since December 2016 David de Freitas applied for my bankruptcy and it's been a deeply unpleasant experience. Whilst at the same time David de Freitas is represented by an army of lawyers who are on a "no win no fee" arrangement. If I lose they will charge me double fees at over £1200 per hour as their "success fee".

One of his lawyers is Manual Barca QC who is in the top 10 defamation lawyers in the country. To date David de Freitas has spent absolutely nothing on legal fees; he had publicly accused me of raping his daughter; got away with it; drained me of cash and now holding me to ransom again.

The fight will continue to clear my name. It will continue on April 17th 2018. Not long to go now.

Thursday, 22 December 2016

Court of Appeal - a £400,000 problem

So today I got permission to appeal the libel case. That was good news.

But there was a twist. The court granted the appeal hearing on condition that I pay £400,000 within 14 days.

If I don't pay £400,00 then there's no appeal hearing...

On top of the actual appeal of the libel case I now have to appeal the £400,000 condition. This is not simple. Today is the 23rd December and I have only 7 days to fill in the application form to request a the hearing to get that £400,000 condition removed. Then we can go to the actual appeal itself.

So complicated.

And a lot of hard work. This isn't going to be simple. If i want to lift the £400,000 condition then I need to disclose all of my finances to the court and to David de Freitas and his lawyers. The process is extremely intrusive.

Mr de Freitas will now get to see all my bank statements, see where I do my shopping, he'll get all my tax returns etc etc.

I spent all night long, sorting out my papers. I didn't leave my office until 4am. It was exhausting and just terribly depressing. Here is a short video I took:






Tuesday, 20 December 2016

Permission to Appeal

Good news! I have permission to appeal the libel judgement. If it goes to appeal and I get the judgement overturned then I won't be going bankrupt anymore.

We applied for permission to appeal back in September, and for the last three months the court for appeal have been reviewing the case papers.

The court of appeal has read through the papers and have written to following:

"The learned judge's judgement was long and careful. I am nevertheless persuaded that for the reasons set out in Counsel's skeleton argument there is a realist prospect of persuading the court that he was wrong to regard the section 4 defence as established particularly in circumstances where as the judge observed there was much to be said for the appellant's legal analysis and the defendant was pursuing a media strategy which does not appeal to have recognised any need for reference to the appellants side of the story and his answer to the serious allegations made against him. In addition the appeal raises important questions about the ambit of the section 4 defence in cases of this kind.

I am also persuaded that there is a realist prospect of persuading the full court that the judge was wrong to find that the claimant would have suffered no serious harm to his reputation or its likelihood as a result of the 3 November items"

See below:





Tuesday, 13 December 2016

Bankruptcy Petition: David de Freitas trying to bankrupt me

Today David de Freitas issued bankruptcy proceedings against me.

I lost the libel case in July and was ordered to pay David de Freitas 90% of his legal costs including a £400,000 "interim payment". So far I haven't paid, because I don't have that kind of money.

I contact the lawyers and they say I need to turn up at court on the 7th February at the High Court where I will be made bankrupt. I will lose everything. Unless I can pay £400,000 before then, or unless I get permission from the court of appeal, to appeal my case. We are still waiting for an answer...

It's depressing.  I have nothing more to say.

See below.

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Defamation Trial: Judgment Day (Economou v de Freitas)

I already know what the judgement is. The judge gave all the parties a draft of the judgement 3 days ago, but I wasn't allowed to tell anyone until it was handed down.

I was at a friends wedding in Cyprus when I found out the news. It was Monday and I was about to drive back to the airport. It was going to be a long drive of around three hours.

At the conclusion of the libel trial the judge indicated that he would hand down the judgement within a few weeks. Six weeks had now passed.

After breakfast, just as I was about to check out of the hotel I received a text message from my lawyer saying "judgement has arrived". We agreed on those words, so not to give the game away. I would call him when I was ready to hear the news.... and he would reveal all.

It was July 25th 2016, and Mr de Freitas defamatory press campaign had taken place 17 months ago.

It had been a long 17 months and I was up to my eyeballs in debt with my own legal costs. The costs had spiralled out of control. We are talking hundreds of thousands of pounds.

Unlike me, Mr de Freitas had not spent a penny on lawyers. He was represented by "no win no fee" lawyers. The lawyers took his case on because if they won they could charge a 100% "uplift fee". Essentially they could double their fees if they won and I would have to foot the bill.

If they won I would have to write him a cheque for £1.2m as well as having paid all of my own legal costs. If he won I would be paying out over £2m.

I called my lawyer Colin to find out the news. I was standing outside. I was almost out of breath in anticipation. "Colin, tell me... tell me what the result is..."

He paused, and slowly said, "It's bad news, you have lost".

I almost fainted. I couldn't believe it. I was now £2m in debt. I was going lose everything I own. I was going bankrupt.

The drive back to the airport was horrible. I gave two people a lift and I just couldn't speak. I was lost in my own thoughts of the horror of having lost this case.

This wasn't supposed to happen. In two days time the press will be saying I lost. I should have been the other way around. I was devastated.

But how could I have lost?


I had looked at the judgement. It was over 100 pages long. We did in fact prove everything we needed to prove. The judge agreed that:

1. David de Freitas was responsible for making the statements.
2. His statements implied I was guilty of rape and they were seriously defamatory.
3. His statements caused serious harm to my reputation.

But the judge said that "David de Freitas free speech rights" was more important that repairing my reputation and that it was more important for Mr de Freitas to be able to talk about his dead daughter freely in the press, even if he was accused me of rape which wasn't true.

At no point did David de Freitas even attempt to show that what he was saying was true. The truth was not pleaded at trial. Instead he had won on a "public interest defence" which was based on a "reasonable belief" that what he was saying was in the public interest.

It was a crazy judgement. How can lying to the press be reasonable?

What was the point of having libel laws, if people can accused you of rape and get away with it, when they didn't even try to prove what they were saying was correct?

On the 27th July we all turned up at court and the judge handed down the judgement. It went public. Within a few hours the news that i had lost my libel case was all over the Internet. The next day it was in the front page of the Daily Telegraph.

Worse was to come though. The judge ordered me to pay David de Freitas legal costs and I had to pay an "interim payment" £400,000 within two months, otherwise I was going bankrupt...


Newspapers on display at a petrol station the day after I lost the case.






Friday, 1 July 2016

Something funny happened that I forgot to mention

Something I forgot to mention last week...

I was about to cross the street when the person I was with turned to me and said,"Look who it is!"

I looked up and opposite me on the other side of the road about to cross to my side was Judge Tan Ikram.

I couldn't believe it. This was the judge that had acquitted me of harassment two weeks before!

What are the chances???

We both clocked each other as we were about to cross the road. I nodded my head in a 'thank you' gesture and he gave me a cheeky grin as he walked past as if to say 'you're welcome' and he disappeared into the distance.

It made my day. He is my hero. He found me not guilty and understood what had really been going on. Thank you Judge Tan Ikram.

Judge Tan Ikram