May 18, 2022






Rebekah Vardy had ‘no alternative’ however to sue Coleen Rooney for libel to ‘vindicate her status’, her barrister informed the Excessive Court docket in the present day because the £3million ‘Wagatha Christie’ trial lastly bought underway. 

Each WAGs sat 10ft aside on the entrance row of the courtroom, with Coleen, 36, accompanied by former England star Wayne, whereas Rebekah, 40, was with out her Leicester Metropolis striker husband, Jamie, 35. 

Introducing the case, Rebekah’s barrister, Hugh Tomlinson QC, stated his consumer ‘had no alternative’ however to carry the libel declare in opposition to Coleen Rooney to ‘set up her innocence and vindicate her status’. 

He stated his consumer and her household had been ‘subjected to abuse and threats’ over Coleen’s accusations, together with being ‘jeered and heckled at soccer matches’ and ‘made the butt of countless jokes’. 

Earlier, Coleen had walked into court docket sporting a plastic boot after fracturing her leg throughout a fall at her dwelling in March, adopted 30 seconds’ later by Rebekah, who was accompanied by two safety guards.  

The WAGS have been at warfare since October 2019 after Coleen accused Rebekah of leaking ‘false tales’ about her non-public life, earlier than claiming that she uncovered the perpetrator after finishing up a social media ‘sting operation’.

Coleen publicly claimed her fellow footballer’s spouse shared three pretend tales she had posted on her private Instagram with The Solar, a declare Rebekah vehemently denied – main her to launch the pricey libel motion.  

Each girls are anticipated to provide proof in court docket, in addition to Wayne himself. 

Coleen is believed to have agreed for a Netflix documentary to be filmed round her facet of the case – reflecting the extraordinary public curiosity within the proceedings. 

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Coleen Rooney, spouse of Derby County supervisor Wayne Rooney, arrives together with her husband on the Royal Courts of Justice in London this morning 

Rebekah Vardy pulled up in a black cab today accompanied by two security guards. Her husband, Jamie, was not among the entourage

Rebekah Vardy pulled up in a black cab in the present day accompanied by two safety guards. Her husband, Jamie, was not among the many entourage 

Coleen was seen wearing a plastic air boot on her left leg today after she suffered a fracture following a fall at her home in March

Coleen was seen sporting a plastic air boot on her left leg in the present day after she suffered a fracture following a fall at her dwelling in March 

Rebekah - pictured today -  is being represented by Ian Tomlinson. He became a QC in 2002, and is a board member of campaign group Hacked Off

Rebekah – pictured in the present day –  is being represented by Ian Tomlinson. He grew to become a QC in 2002, and is a board member of marketing campaign group Hacked Off

On the coronary heart of the dispute are three ‘pretend’ tales which Coleen maintains that she posted on her private Instagram tales as she tried to find who was leaking details about her and her household.

These had been about Coleen claiming that she was travelling to Mexico to search out out about gender choice, making a return to TV and flooding going down at her new dwelling. All three tales later appeared in The Solar.

In a bid to smoke out the perpetrator, Coleen stated she had altered the privateness settings to make the posts seen to only one individual’s account – Rebekah’s.

In a well-known publish figuring out the perpetrator, Coleen wrote: ‘I’ve saved and screenshotted all the unique tales which clearly present only one individual has considered them.

‘It is ………. Rebekah Vardy’s account.’

Addressing the Instagram publish, Rebekah’s barrister, Mr Tomlinson, informed the Excessive Court docket in the present day: ‘The allegation within the publish was and stays false: Mrs Vardy had not leaked details about Mrs Rooney or her family and friends to the Solar newspaper from her non-public Instagram account.

‘Mrs Rooney didn’t have the ‘irrefutable’ proof that she claimed to have had: her so-called ‘cautious investigation’ was nothing of the kind.

‘If anybody had been leaking info from Mrs Rooney’s non-public Instagram this was not performed with Mrs Vardy’s information or approval.’

He continued: ‘Mrs Vardy made strenuous however unsuccessful makes an attempt to settle the case however the publish was not taken down.

‘As outcome, Mrs Vardy had no alternative however to carry this libel motion to determine her innocence and vindicate her status.’

The court docket beforehand heard that Rebekah’s agent and buddy Caroline Watt’s cellphone fell into the ocean after a ship she was on hit a wave earlier than additional info could possibly be extracted from it in August 2021.  

At the moment, Mr Tomlinson stated Rebekah ‘has no private information’ of the incident and ‘all she is aware of is what has been stated by Ms Watt’.

‘It has not been urged that Mrs Vardy had any involvement with this and it can not probably be relied on as proof of wrongdoing by Mrs Vardy,’ he stated. 

The court docket heard Rebekah had suffered ‘huge misery and upset’ over the allegations.

Mr Tomlinson continued: ‘The truth that the events are every married to well-known footballers has led to this motion being trivialised in some media protection as ‘WAG wars’.

‘The data alleged to have been leaked was, as Mrs Rooney admitted on the listening to on April 29, 2022, low worth gossip.

‘However, the affect of the publish on Mrs Vardy was removed from trivial. It has – as was inevitable given Mrs Rooney’s public profile and the sensational nature of the allegation made – been republished within the nationwide media, and on social media on many hundreds of events, to many hundreds of thousands of readers.

‘Though the media, as they’re entitled to do, have turned this case into an leisure it isn’t, from Mrs Vardy’s perspective, entertaining.

‘It has been, and continues to be, deeply upsetting in circumstances the place she was not the one who leaked details about Mrs Rooney. Mrs Vardy must clear her identify to be able to ever be given an opportunity to maneuver on from this horrendous episode.’

He added that it was ‘apparent that Mrs Vardy has suffered, and continues to endure, huge misery and upset because of its publication’. 

‘On account of the Submit, Mrs Vardy and her household had been subjected to abuse and threats. She was jeered and heckled at soccer matches and was the butt of countless jokes and additional accusations,’ he stated. 

Mr Tomlinson stated Coleen accepted her publish was defamatory of Rebekah however denied that it induced ‘critical hurt’ and her ‘fundamental defence’ was that it was true.

He stated she relied on ‘her so-called ‘sting operation’ which led to her being dubbed ‘Wagatha Christie’ by the media’.

Emerging from a black London cab, Rebekah arriving outside the steps of the High Court this morning for the start of the Wagatha Christie trial

Rising from a black London cab, Rebekah arriving outdoors the steps of the Excessive Court docket this morning for the beginning of the Wagatha Christie trial 

Rebekah walks through a crowd of photographers towards the entrance of the Royal Courts of Justice on the Strand

Rebekah walks by means of a crowd of photographers in direction of the doorway of the Royal Courts of Justice on the Strand 

Rebekah - the wife of Leicester City strike Jamie Vardy - is photographed as she arrived in court today

Rebekah – the spouse of Leicester Metropolis strike Jamie Vardy – is photographed as she arrived in court docket in the present day 

Coleen bore a purposeful expression as she walked in to court this morning alongside her former England star husband

Coleen bore a purposeful expression as she walked in to court docket this morning alongside her former England star husband 

Coleen glances to one side as she walks into the entrance of the High Court carrying two handbags and wearing a plastic boot

Coleen glances to at least one facet as she walks into the doorway of the Excessive Court docket carrying two purses and sporting a plastic boot 

In November 2020, legal professionals for each events met on the first Excessive Court docket listening to in London.

In a key ‘meanings listening to’, Mr Justice Warbys dominated that Coleen’s October 2019 publish ‘clearly recognized’ Rebekah as being ‘responsible of the intense and constant breach of belief’.

The decide concluded that the ‘pure and atypical’ that means of the posts was that Rebekah had ‘frequently and regularly abused her standing as a trusted follower of Coleen’s private Instagram account by secretly informing The Solar of Coleen’s non-public posts and tales’.

Below English defamation regulation, the burden of proof now can be on Coleen to show that her publish was ‘considerably true’.

The total trial follows months of preliminary hearings – none of which had been attended by both girl.

In February, Coleen’s barrister David Sherborne informed the Excessive Court docket {that a} ‘sequence of unlucky occasions’ had befallen a few of the key proof within the case, notably Ms Watt’s cellphone falling into the North Sea from a ship she was on.

Rebekah’s legal professionals have stated she has ‘nothing to cover’. 

Rebekah Vardy with her agent, Caroline Watt, who had been due to give evidence in the trial but was recently found to be 'not fit' to take part, also withdrawing her written evidence

 Rebekah Vardy together with her agent, Caroline Watt, who had been because of give proof within the trial however was lately discovered to be ‘not match’ to participate, additionally withdrawing her written proof

Most lately, the Excessive Court docket was informed by Mr Sherborne that Rebekah ‘seems to simply accept’ that Ms Watt was the supply of leaked tales about Coleen that had been revealed in The Solar.

Hugh Tomlinson QC, for Rebekah, informed the court docket that his consumer’s new witness assertion didn’t comprise ‘any change no matter within the pleaded case’.

Ms Watt had been because of give proof within the trial however was lately discovered to be ‘not match’ to participate, additionally withdrawing her written proof.

Mr Tomlinson stated: ‘We merely do not know what the true place is in relation to Ms Watt… She’s not speaking with anyone.’

The trial in entrance of Mrs Justice Steyn is predicted to final seven days.

Wagatha Christie timeline: How Coleen and Rebekah’s long-running, vicious warfare unfolded earlier than the eyes of the world 

September 2017 to October 2019 – The Solar runs a lot of articles about Coleen, together with that she travelled to Mexico to look into child ‘gender choice’ remedy, her plan to revive her TV profession and the flooding of her basement.

October 9, 2019 – Coleen makes use of social media to accuse Rebekah of promoting tales from her non-public Instagram account to the tabloids.

Coleen says she spent 5 months trying to work out who was sharing details about her and her household based mostly on posts she had made on her private social media web page.

After sharing a sequence of ‘false’ tales and utilizing a strategy of elimination, Coleen claims they had been considered by one Instagram account, belonging to Rebekah.

Rebekah, then pregnant together with her fifth youngster, denies the allegations and says varied individuals had entry to her Instagram through the years.

She claims to be ‘so upset’ by Coleen’s accusation, later including: ‘I believed she was my buddy however she fully annihilated me.’

The general public dispute makes headlines around the globe, with the hashtag #WagathaChristie trending.

How it all began: On October 9, 2019, Coleen Rooney, now 36, accused Rebekah Vardy, 40, of leaking 'false stories' about her to the press in an Instagram post (above)

The way it all started: On October 9, 2019, Coleen Rooney, now 36, accused Rebekah Vardy, 40, of leaking ‘false tales’ about her to the press in an Instagram publish (above) 

Shortly after Coleen's public accusation, Rebekah - who was pregnant and on holiday in Dubai at the time - denied any involvement (above)

Shortly after Coleen’s public accusation, Rebekah – who was pregnant and on vacation in Dubai on the time – denied any involvement (above) 

February 13, 2020 – In a tearful look on ITV’s Unfastened Girls, Rebekah says the stress of the dispute induced her to have extreme nervousness assaults and she or he ‘ended up in hospital thrice’. 

Coleen says in an announcement that she doesn’t wish to ‘interact in additional public debate’.

June 23, 2020 – It emerges that Rebekah has launched libel proceedings in opposition to Coleen.

Rebekah’s legal professionals allege she ‘suffered excessive misery, harm, nervousness and embarrassment because of the publication of the publish and the occasions which adopted’.

November 19-20, 2020 – The libel battle has its first Excessive Court docket listening to in London.

A decide guidelines that Coleen’s October 2019 publish ‘clearly recognized’ Rebekah as being ‘responsible of the intense and constant breach of belief’.

Mr Justice Warby concludes that the ‘pure and atypical’ that means of the posts was that Rebekah had ‘frequently and regularly abused her standing as a trusted follower of Coleen’s private Instagram account by secretly informing The Solar of Coleen’s non-public posts and tales’.

February 8-9, 2022 – A sequence of explosive messages between Rebekah and her agent Caroline Watt – which Coleen’s legal professionals allege had been about her – are revealed at a preliminary court docket listening to.

The court docket is informed Rebekah was not referring to Coleen when she referred to as somebody a ‘nasty bitch’ in a single change with Ms Watt.

Coleen’s legal professionals search additional info from the WhatsApp messages, however the court docket is informed that Ms Watt’s cellphone fell into the North Sea after a ship she was on hit a wave, earlier than additional info could possibly be extracted from it.

February 14 – Coleen is refused permission to carry a Excessive Court docket declare in opposition to Ms Watt for misuse of personal info to be heard alongside the libel battle.

A Excessive Court docket decide, Mrs Justice Steyn, says the bid was introduced too late and former alternatives to make the declare had not been taken.

April 13 – Ms Watt will not be match to provide oral proof on the upcoming libel trial, the Excessive Court docket is informed because the case returns for an additional listening to.

The agent revokes permission for her witness assertion for use, and withdraws her waiver which might have allowed Solar journalists to say whether or not she was a supply of the allegedly leaked tales.

April 29 – Rebekah ‘seems to simply accept’ that her agent was the supply of allegedly leaked tales, Coleen’s barrister David Sherborne tells the Excessive Court docket.

He argues {that a} new witness assertion submitted by Rebekah suggests Ms Watt was the supply however Rebekah claims she ‘didn’t authorise or condone her’.

Rebekah’s lawyer Hugh Tomlinson says the assertion didn’t comprise ‘any change no matter within the pleaded case’, together with her authorized group having no communication with Ms Watt.

From gender choice to a flooded basement: The ‘false’ tales Coleen claims to have planted on her Instagram throughout ‘sting’ operation 

Three ‘false’ tales Coleen Rooney claims to have planted on her non-public Instagram account as a part of a months-long ‘sting operation’ are on the coronary heart of her libel battle with Rebekah Vardy.

Coleen accused her fellow footballer’s spouse of leaking the knowledge to the Solar newspaper in a now notorious social media publish – one thing Rebekah denies.

Right here, we have a look at what has been claimed in regards to the tales:

The gender choice article

Coleen claims to have posted the primary of her ‘sting operation’ posts a couple of so-called gender-selection remedy on April 8 2019.

The publish featured {a photograph} of the again seat of an airplane overlaid with the textual content ‘Let’s go and see what this gender choice is all about’, Coleen claims.

She alleges that the invented publish was marked on Instagram as ‘seen’ solely by Rebekah’s account, her legal professionals have informed the Excessive Court docket.

In August that 12 months, the Solar revealed an article claiming Coleen travelled to Mexico to look into the remedy.

The story, carrying journalist Andy Halls’s byline, is headlined ‘COL’S BABY GIRL BID Coleen Rooney travelled to Mexico to look into £8k ‘gender choice’ remedy in determined bid to have child woman’.

The article, referring to ‘a supply’ and ‘buddies’, alleged Coleen is ‘so determined for her fifth child to be a lady’ that she needs to listen to extra a couple of course of ‘by which medical doctors look at embryos in a lab earlier than implanting solely these of the specified gender again into the womb’.

TV choices article

A personal ‘false’ publish about planning a return to TV is made on September 25 2019, Coleen claims.

She says it featured a ‘selfie’ and the textual content ‘Up and out!! Easing my means again into work!! TV choices in the present day…. possibly it is time for Australia’.

Coleen’s legal professionals claimed in her Excessive Court docket defence that the publish was solely accessible by Rebekah’s account.

Three days later, a Solar article beneath Michael Hamilton’s byline was revealed beneath the headline ‘ROO-MBA Coleen Rooney in talks to affix Strictly subsequent 12 months as she appears to be like to revive TV profession when Wayne returns to UK’.

It quoted an nameless supply and claimed to solely reveal Coleen was ‘locked in talks with producers’, deliberate to ‘entrance a trend programme’ and ‘might properly do’ the Strictly Come Dancing TV present.

The flooded basement article

Coleen says she shared false details about her basement being flooded on October 2 2019, the third ‘sting operation’ publish.

Her legal professionals have once more alleged to the Excessive Court docket that the publish was solely accessible to Rebekah’s account.

On October 8, The Solar revealed a narrative, with Simon Boyle’s byline, headlined: ‘IN ROO-INS Wayne and Coleen Rooney’s £20million ‘Morrisons mansion’ flooded throughout Storm Lorenzo’.

The article, quoting a ‘supply near the couple’, claimed to disclose that dangerous climate had ‘wreaked havoc’ at a Cheshire property, with Coleen being ‘referred to as in to search out the cellar had been flooded’. 

Who’s who within the case? Former buddies who had a bitter falling out, the previous Virgin Atlantic air hostess, and the superstar legal professionals going face to face  

Rebekah Vardy

The footballer’s spouse bringing the declare, Rebekah’s household was thrust into the limelight after her husband Jamie helped Leicester Metropolis on their strategy to an unlikely Premier League win in 2016.

The mannequin and TV character, 40, appeared on I am A Movie star in 2017 earlier than later showing on Dancing On Ice in 2021, in addition to making appearances on Unfastened Girls.

The mother-of-five lately wrote a kids’s e-book together with her husband Jamie, entitled Cedric The Little Sloth With A Huge Dream, which follows just a little sloth who hopes to turn out to be a footballer. 

Coleen Rooney

Coleen, the footballer’s spouse defending the declare, is probably now higher referred to as ‘Wagatha Christie’ after her social media posts on the coronary heart of the libel trial went viral.

The 36-year-old has had a diversified profession together with TV presenting, writing, in addition to fronting an train DVD.

Happier times: Rebekah and Coleen celebrating England's win against Wales at Stade Bollaert-Delelis in France in 2016

Happier occasions: Rebekah and Coleen celebrating England’s win in opposition to Wales at Stade Bollaert-Delelis in France in 2016

Coleen met her husband when she was 12, because the couple went to the identical college in Liverpool.

They started relationship after they each turned 16 and have 4 sons collectively – Kai Wayne, Klay Anthony, Package Joseph and Cass Mac.

Caroline Watt

Mrs Vardy’s buddy and agent, Ms Watt has featured in a few of the preliminary hearings, regardless of not being a celebration to the declare or giving proof on the trial.

She is a former Virgin Atlantic air hostess who has been Rebekah’s agent for the previous seven years, serving to to construct her profile within the nationwide media.

Stories that she now not represents her following the present controversy engulfing the 2 have been dismissed as inaccurate with Ms Watt remaining near Ms Vardy each professionally and personally.

Ms Watt, 39, is married to former footballer Steve Watt, who performed briefly for Chelsea, making one Premier League look for 2 minutes in 2005 and Swansea Metropolis. He’s presently supervisor of Kent non-league facet Hythe City and so they have two kids.

After leaving the airline trade, Ms Watt started working as an agent on the earth of leisure, shortly creating a status for her communication abilities and skill to community.

She was previously employed by expertise company The Frontrow Partnership however left in 2019 to go it alone and took her fundamental consumer and shut buddy, Ms Vardy together with her.

Ms Watt has been credited with constructing Ms Vardy’s public profile by making certain that she frequently featured within the nationwide media and in addition brokered the deal for her to look on the hit actuality TV present I am A Movie star… Get Me Out Of Right here! in 2018.

Ms Watt began representing the high-profile WAG in 2015, when her husband, Leicester Metropolis striker Jamie Vardy shot to fame.

She is a daily customer to the Vardy’s Lincolnshire dwelling and in addition socialises with Ms Vardy, attending glitzy events and bars.

Her different shoppers embrace the previous Web page 3 woman Nicola McLean however it’s Ms Vardy that has been the most important asset in her profession as an agent. 

Hugh Tomlinson QC (pictured), who is representing Ms Vardy, is a top-flight privacy silk who has launched a number of battles with the Press in a wide-spanning career

Meanwhile, David Sherborne (pictured), 53, who has been dubbed one of Hollywood’s favourite lawyers, is acting for Mrs Rooney

Hugh Tomlinson QC (left), who’s representing Ms Vardy, is a top-flight privateness silk who has launched a lot of battles with the Press in a wide-spanning profession. David Sherborne (proper), 53, is performing for Mrs Rooney

Hugh Tomlinson QC

An skilled media barrister, Mr Tomlinson is on the entrance of Mrs Vardy’s authorized group within the libel case.

Referred to as to the bar in 1983, his earlier shoppers embrace the Prince of Wales in his authorized battle in opposition to the Mail on Sunday over his diaries, easyJet founder Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou and oligarch Roman Abramovich.

Mr Tomlinson, who grew to become a QC in 2002, is a board member of marketing campaign group Hacked Off.

David Sherborne

Mr Sherborne additionally has a status because the barrister the wealthy and well-known flip to for authorized help – his earlier consumer record consists of Diana, Princess of Wales, Hollywood actor Michael Douglas and former prime minister Tony Blair and his spouse Cherie.

Mrs Rooney’s barrister isn’t any stranger to high-profile libel trials on the Royal Courts of Justice, notably representing Johnny Depp within the actor’s 2020 libel declare in opposition to the writer of the Solar, Information Group Newspapers (NGN).

The barrister, referred to as to the bar in 1992, has additionally represented dozens of claimants, together with celebrities, suing NGN over cellphone hacking on the Information Of The World.

Mrs Justice Steyn

The Excessive Court docket decide overseeing the case, Mrs Justice Steyn (pictured proper) was appointed in 2019 and sits within the Queen’s Bench Division – the a part of the Excessive Court docket which offers with defamation, private damage and breach of contract claims.

In addition to overseeing the ‘Wagatha Christie’ declare, different outstanding circumstances she has heard embrace Arron Banks’ libel declare in opposition to journalist Carole Cadwalladr and the FDA union’s unsuccessful authorized problem over Boris Johnson’s choice to help Priti Patel following bullying accusations.

The daughter of former Regulation Lord Lord Steyn, Mrs Justice Steyn lined quite a lot of circumstances as a barrister, together with a case over the enlargement of Heathrow airport.  





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