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Archived News from July 2007

MEALE EMBARRASSES MANSFIELD AGAIN
10th July 2007 21:28





Mark Wells doing Interview with Calendar News



I will sue over football libel, vows MP
CHAD website, 10 July 2007
By Jonathan Schofield
MANSFIELD MP Alan Meale has reassured a disgruntled Stags' fan that he is no longer taking legal action against him ––– but has warned 'if people libel me, I will sue'.
Mark Wells insists the Labour MP has been trying to sue the wrong supporter for allegedly defamatory remarks on a Mansfield Town FC supporters' website.

And after waiting four months for a reply from the MP and his solicitor, the angry fan confronted Mr Meale at his Saturday surgery in Mansfield while fellow fans protested outside to highlight his plight.

Mr Meale told Chad that he would be prepared to make a 'full apology' to Mr Wells once his own investigation into the affair has finished.

"Mr Wells came to see me at last and we had a full and frank chat," Mr Meale told Chad. "I assured him that no legal action against him was imminent and he seemed to be quite happy about that.

"I had said many times that he was free to pop in and see me at any time, my door is always open. We are checking the information provided by private investigators and if we find out he was not involved, I will make a full apology."

Mr Meale also confirmed he will not let the matter drop and has hired private investigators to track down the person who posted the comments.

He said he fully intends to sue the individual responsible once they have been identified — although he has pledged to give any money awarded by the courts to local charities.

After meeting Mr Meale, a relieved Mr Wells told Chad: "It is ridiculous that it has had to come to this, when we have to protest outside an MP's office for me to get justice.

"I am delighted that Mr Meale is eventually going to take action to clear my name. I look forward to a full and frank apology from Mr Meale and an explanation as to how my personal details were obtained.

"I would like to thank the SFFC (Stags Fans For Change) for their support."

Mr Wells said he was stunned to find himself accused of defamation, threatened with court action and facing demands for compensation when he received a letter from the MP's solicitor on 14th March this year.

The letter accused the respected local teacher and decorated ex-solider of making defamatory comments about the MP on Stagsnet, the Stags Supporters Association (SSA) website. But when Mr Wells' solicitor wrote back explaining he had the wrong man, the MP and his solicitor failed to respond.

Comments about Mr Meale were made on the website by someone posting under the username 'Stagsfan' and the MP took the SSA to court to make them reveal the identity of the mystery poster.

He won the case and the SSA gave him all the information they had about 'Stagsfan' — the username and an email address — raising questions about how Mr Wells was identified by the MP.

To view a video interview with Mark Wells click here
http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=BWGDQz50HTQ



Fan confronts MP over legal threats
CHAD website, 07Jul2007

A STAGS' fan wrongly accused of defamation by Mansfield MP Alan Meale has today challenged the politician at his Saturday surgery while fellow supporters protested outside.
Mark Wells, of Mansfield Woodhouse, has waited four months for a reply from Mr Meale after he was accused of defaming the MP on a Stags fans' website –– which appears to be a case of mistaken identity.

The bewildered supporter has provided evidence to show Mr Meale has got the wrong Mark Wells and decided to attend the MP's surgery to demand answers Mr Meale and his solicitor have so far refused to provide.

"I am at my wits end with this fiasco that Alan Meale has thrust upon my life," said Mark. "He demands I reply to him, but he insists on ignoring me –– well enough is enough.

"We have written to Gordon Brown, Harriet Harman and the regional Labour Party asking them for help. All I want is some straight answers to straight questions. Mr Meale has got the wrong man and he knows it.

"He is hoping that it will all blow over, but he has accused me of a crime I have not committed and I want my name cleared."

Mark was stunned to find himself accused of defamation, threatened with court action and facing demands for compensation when he received a letter from the MP's solicitor on 14th March this year.

The letter accused Mark, a respected local teacher and decorated ex-solider, of making defamatory comments about the MP on Stagsnet, the Stags Supporters Association (SSA) website.

The letter demanded he make a full public apology, proposals for paying damages and payment of legal costs but when Mark's solicitor wrote back explaining he had the wrong man the MP and his solicitor failed to respond.

Comments about the Mr Meale were made on the website by someone posting under the username Stagsfan and earlier this year the MP took the SSA to court to make them reveal the identity of the mystery poster.

He won the case and the SSA gave him all the information they had about Stagsfan, which was the username and an email address.

Mr Meale then contacted Mark by post –– even though the SSA had not given him a postal address –– which has raised serious questions about how Mr Wells was identified.

A spokesman for Stags Fans for Change (SFFC), who have supported Mr Wells, said: "It is intolerable that a law-abiding citizen should be persecuted in this way. We have discovered that there are 13 different M Wells' in the Mansfield telephone directory.

"We have checked the electoral register for Mansfield and there are five different Mark Wells'. We also know that there is at least one other Mark Wells that supports the Stags, there may indeed be several.

"We cannot understand how and why Mr Meale selected this particular Mark Wells or how he obtained his postal address."


MP not taking legal action against 'wrong fan'
CHAD website, 07Jul2007

MANSFIELD MP Alan Meale has today told a disgruntled Stags' fan that he is no longer taking legal action against him.
Mark Wells insists that the MP has been trying to sue the wrong supporter for allegedly defamatory remarks on a Mansfield Town FC supporters' website.

And after waiting four months for a reply from the MP and his solicitor, the angry fan today confronted Mr Meale at his Saturday surgery in Mansfield.

At the same time fellow fans protested outside, highlighting his plight.

But during the meeting Mr Wells heard for the first time that Mr Meale is no longer taking legal action against him.

Afterwards a relieved Mr Wells told chad.co.uk: "It is ridiculous that it has had to come to this, when we have to protest outside an MP's office for me to get justice.

"I am delighted that Mr Meale is eventually going to take action to clear my name. I look forward to a full and frank apology from Mr Meale and an explanation as to how my personal details were obtained.

"I would like to thank the SFFC (Stags Fans For Change) for their support in bringing my case to Mr Meale's attention."

In a statement to Mansfield radio station 103.2, Mr Meale said: "I have once again today reassured my constituent that at the present time legal action against him is not pending.

"Investigations are continuing on an ongoing basis into information gathered about slanderous and libellous comments made against me. This has resulted from information that has been handed over to investigators, including details recently acquired in the successful action at Mansfield County Court."

However, a spokesman for SFFC, who have supported Mr Wells throughout his ordeal, later told chad.co.uk: "This is the first time that Mark or his solicitor has had any communication from Mr Meale or his solicitor following their initial letter threatening legal action.

"But, of course, we are pleased that Mr Meale has finally said Mark is no longer under threat of legal action."

Before the meeting Mr Wells had said:"I am at my wits end with this fiasco that Alan Meale has thrust upon my life. He demands I reply to him, but he insists on ignoring me –– well enough is enough."

Mr Wells was stunned to find himself accused of defamation, threatened with court action and facing demands for compensation when he received a letter from the MP's solicitor on 14th March this year.

The letter accused the respected local teacher and decorated ex-solider of making defamatory comments about the MP on Stagsnet, the Stags Supporters Association (SSA) website.

The letter demanded he make a full public apology, proposals for paying damages and payment of legal costs. But when Mr Wells' solicitor wrote back explaining he had the wrong man, the MP and his solicitor failed to respond.

Comments about Mr Meale were made on the website by someone posting under the username Stagsfan and earlier this year the MP took the SSA to court to make them reveal the identity of the mystery poster.

He won the case and the SSA gave him all the information they had about Stagsfan, which was the username and an email address.

Mr Meale then contacted Mark by post –– even though the SSA had not given him a postal address –– which has raised serious questions about how Mr Wells was identified.

 

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