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Facebook libel leads to £10,000 payout

The High Court has ordered a chef to pay £10,000 in libel damages for a Facebook posting in which he called a former friend a homosexual paedophile. Law student Raymond Bryce said he was neither.28 Jul 2010

Jeremy Barber posted a picture of child sex abuse on Bryce's Facebook page along with the message "Ray, you like kids and you are gay so I bet you love this picture, ha ha", according to The Sentinel newspaper in Staffordshire, where Bryce lives.

The allegation of paedophilia was serious and could have damaged Bryce's person as well as his reputation, Mr Justice Tugendhat ruled. He said that it was not unknown for people wrongly accused of paedophilia to be attacked.

Barber had earlier been sentenced to community service for the offence of distributing the image, and has now been ordered to pay £10,000 in damages.