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by Mike Caswell
Patrick Byrne, operator of the Deep Capture website, says it will be an injustice if the defamation case he faces in the Supreme Court of British Columbia from Vancouver promoter Altaf Nazerali does not go to a full trial. He contends there is extensive evidence that the court should hear. He plans to argue that statements on his website about Mr. Nazerali are true.
Mr. Byrne is responding to a request by Mr. Nazerali to have the case decided through a summary judgment. In an application filed on May 25, 2012, Mr. Nazerali said that a series of "chapters" on the Deep Capture site left readers with the impression he is a terrorist and an arms dealer. The statements are "gravely and outrageously defamatory" and the defendants are clearly liable. He asked for court orders that would effectively decide the case without a trial. He also cited a prior defamation case in which a judge awarded $875,000 in damages.
Mr. Byrne, in a very brief response to that application, says the matter must go to a full trial. Deciding the case through a summary judgment (in which the judge views court filings, but hears no testimony) would be unfair. As Mr. Byrne sees it, the sheer volume of evidence alone requires a full trial. Moreover, the issues are so complex that "deciding this matter [summarily] would amount to an injustice."
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