Geoffrey Rush has has a major win in his defamation proceedings against The Daily Telegraph with a judge ruling the newspaper could not use key parts of its argument in trial.
Rush’s legal team had challenged two parts of Nationwide News’ defence case and moved to have them struck out.
Federal Court Judge Justice Michael Wigney found the allegations, published in a “King Leer” front page story late last year, were not “sufficiently specific and precise” and were “vague and imprecise”.
“Inadequate and insufficient details are given about the alleged touching,” Justice Wigney told the Federal Court in Sydney today.
“What part of Mr Rush relevantly touched the actress? And what part of the actress’ body was touched?”
He also ruled against Nationwide News’ subpoena to the Sydney Theatre Company, describing it as a ‘fishing expedition’ in the hope of finding something in support of its plea.
“It should not be permitted to use the court’s compulsory processes to obtain information and evidence so as to establish a defence,” he said.
Rush’s legal team pushed for a trial date to be set as soon as possible so their client “can be vindicated”, but it is not yet clear whether The Daily telegraph’s legal team will appeal.