Gibraltar’s High Court has ordered Vox MP Agustín Rosety to pay £20,000 (€23,500) for defamation of de la Roca Prime Minister Fabian Picardo. In eight tweets published between November and December 2019, the retired Marine Corps general accused Picardo of being a “mafioso, protector of smugglers and promoter of money laundering” for looking the other way while ruling a “nest of corruption, fraud prosecutor and organizer”. crime” and having turned Gibraltar into a “criminal paradise”.
The colony’s prime minister filed his lawsuit in January 2020, citing EU law that allows an EU citizen residing in one country to be sued in another country where the alleged harm occurred. This was based on the fact that the United Kingdom’s final exit from the EU had not yet been finalized at that point in time; and in an estimate that between 2,000 and 3,000 Gibraltarians saw the allegedly defamatory tweets.
The Vox MP sent the Gibraltar judge two briefs in which, among other things, he declined his jurisdiction and appealed for his immunity as a member of the Spanish Congress, but according to the verdict, neither produced the brief to appear in the case nor paid the appropriate fee , so that the trial took place in his absence.
Picardo has expressed his satisfaction at the verdict, which also orders Rosety to pay the legal costs that have yet to be assessed, and has assured that he will donate the compensation to a charity in Gibraltar. The Prime Minister has announced that he will start the process of enforcing the sentence in the Spanish courts and is confident he will achieve it, as he has already done with the pseudo union Clean Hands, which has been fined £30,000 in Gibraltar for defamation .
So far, Rosety has not commented on her conviction.
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