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Complainant Name:
Alun Cole

Clauses Noted: 1, 3

Publication: The Mail on Sunday

Complaint:

Mr Alun Cole complained to the Press Complaints Commission through his solicitors Bird & Bird LLP that an article reporting that Ken Anderson was being sued by the Department of Health gave the misleading impression that he - as Mr Anderson's solicitor at Eversheds LLP - had actively assisted in the arranging of Mr Anderson's stay on the Turks and Caicos Islands, an alleged benefit to which the High Court writ claimed he was not entitled. In fact, the complainant had not been accused of any wrongdoing, a position which had been made clear to the newspaper prior to publication.

Resolution:

While the newspaper did not accept that it had misrepresented the complainant's role - that Mr Anderson's travel arrangements had been made by Eversheds LLP but paid for by the Turks and Caicos Government - the complaint was resolved when the PCC negotiated the publication of the following online clarification:

We wish to make it clear that Mr Alun Cole, a senior commercial lawyer who until recently was a partner at Eversheds LLP, is not the subject of any claim by the Department of Health and has not been accused of any wrongdoing at all. We did not intend to make any allegation to the contrary in the article. His only involvement in the case is as a potential witness for the claimant. We have also been asked to clarify that the decision to invite Mr Anderson to the Turks and Caicos Islands was made exclusively by the Government of the Islands, and that the travel arrangements made for Mr Anderson and his sons by Eversheds LLP were made at the explicit request of the Government.

Date Published: 10/10/2011



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