Malins wins Independent libel case

SOLICITOR and former MP Humphrey Malins has cleared his name of allegations he acted in conflict of interest when representing a defendant on charges involving a bogus arms-to-Iran deal.

Malins, former Croydon North West MP and Parliamentary Private Secretary to a Home Office Minister, last week accepted undisclosed “substantial” libel damages and an apology at the High Court over the allegations in The Independent last April.

His solicitor, Frank Presland, told Mr Justice Drake the Independent said Malins had been accused of possible conflict of interest over his role in the arms trial, by reason of his Home Office position and the fact the Home Secretary had been informed of the possibility of a real arms deal.

Presland said the paper was mistaken and there was no conflict of interest. Malin's conduct of the case was “exemplary”. He said Malins was extremely hurt by the the suggestion that he would put his client second to his interest as an MP.

For the paper, solicitor Pamela Cassidy said it had only intended to suggest a possible conflict situation.