NEW YORK (PTI): An American court has rejected Ajitabhs Bachchans plea for enforcement of a British Courts award of forty thousand pounds in a libel suit against India Abroad Publications based here British Libel Law is “Antithetical” to protections afforded press by the United States constitution the Court held while denying Bachchans plea in a case which arose out of India Aboard circulating a Swedish newspaper story on the Bofors gun deal. Bachchans attorneys said they were consulting their client but declined to say if they plan to appeal. One of the options open to them is to ask for review of Judgement by a three member bench. Delivering Judgment New York State Supreme Court Justice Shirley Finger hood said that England and United States share many common principles of law.
Judge held that a “significant difference between Jurisdiction lay in England lack of an equivalent to the first Amendment of The United States Constitution
The protection Toffee speech and press embodied in that amendment would be seriously jeopardized by entry of foreign libel judgments granted pursuant to standards deemed appropriate in England but considered anti theatrical to protections afforded press by the U.S. Constitution.
Several media organizations and professional associations led by New York Times Company and representing broadcasting newspapers wire services magazines and book publishers had opposed enforcement of the British courts Judgement a libel laws in Britain are much more strict than in United States.
Article extracted from this publication >> May 1, 1992