In the Media

Libel law review over McDonald's ruling

PUBLISHED February 16, 2005

The government is to review the libel laws after two penniless environmental campaigners who were sued by McDonald's, the global burger chain, yesterday won a ruling at the European court of human rights that their rights to a fair trial and freedom of expression were violated when they were denied legal aid.

The libel battle pitted Helen Steel, a part-time barmaid earning £65 a week, and David Morris, a single parent on income support, against an expert legal team headed by a £2,000-a-day libel QC in a 313-day trial, the longest in English legal history.