Scuffle of the week

There are no lawyers quite as vicious as libel lawyers. Olswang is peeved about rivals Burton Copeland's spin on a story about disgraced former Tory minister Johnathan Aitken. He tried to pay for his daughter's legal fees in a related legal issue arising from his failed libel case against The Guardian. Burton Copeland claims The Guardian tried to stop this and only caved in at the "eleventh hour". However, The Guardian (represented by Olswang) says it agreed to let Aitken pay his daughter's fees a full eight days before a planned hearing. "The implication that the paper has been vindictive is not just unfair, it is extremely distasteful," says a Guardian spokeswoman. If only the Government would bring back pistols at dawn.