NEWS30 May 2013

Law firm sees Sorrell defamation suit dismissed

Legal North America

US — A defamation suit brought against WPP chief executive Martin Sorrell by law firm Sabharwal & Finkel has been dismissed by the New York State Supreme Court.

Sabharwal & Finkel, representing New Delhi Television in legal action (since dismissed) against several WPP companies, sued Sorrell over statements he made in an interview with Indian news site, in which he referred to the law firm as being based in Florida, specialising in restaurant law and working on a contingency basis.

The lawyers claimed that the statements caused them to suffer various professional injuries, however Judge Cynthia Kern ruled that none of the above statements were defamatory, while Sorrell’s claim that NDTV’s legal action had been brought to “extort money from us” was not actionable as it was an expression of opinion rather than fact.

NDTV had sued WPP and several of its companies, including Kantar, for more than $810m in damages, claiming that false ratings data produced by TAM Media Research – a company jointly owned by Nielsen and Kantar – had caused it to lose ad revenue.

The lawsuit was dismissed in March, but NDTV has since filed an appeal – thought only in relation to the dismissal of its claims against Nielsen, not WPP.


1 Comment

11 years ago

How does a CEO the size of a company like WPP find himself in this predicament? Is this normal for the industry or is he unusual? It seems like an enormous waste of time for a chief executive/

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