Guardian’s Jack Monroe sues Katie Hopkins for up to £50,000 over war memorial vandalism tweet

Katie Hopkins.JPG

Mail Online columnist Katie Hopkins is being sued for up to £50,000 over a tweet apparently linking The Guardian's Jack Monroe with war memorial vandalism.

The libel claim follows an apparent case of mistaken identity following anti-austerity protest in London in May last year.

After the words "fuck Tory scum" were sprayed on a war memorial, New Statesman contributing editor Laurie Penny said on Twitter: "I don't have a problem with this. The bravery of past generations does not oblige us to be cowed today."

Hopkins, who at the time worked for The Sun, apparently mixed up the two columnists when she directed a tweet at Monroe asking: "Scrawled on any memorials lately? Vandalised the memory of those who fought for your freedom? Grandma got any more medals?”

Monroe replied: “I have NEVER ‘scrawled on a memorial’. Brother in the RAF. Dad was a Para in the Falklands. You’re a piece of shit.”

The Twitter incident was reported on by Huffington Post in May last year.

She then asked Hopkins to delete the tweet, make a public apology and donate £5,000 to "migrant rescue".

Hopkins deleted the tweet only, and later said: "Can someone explain to me – in 10 words or less – the difference between irritant @PennyRed [Laurie Penny] and social anthrax @MsJackMonroe?"

This spat took place on 18 May. On 2 June, Hopkins sent a public Twitter message to Monroe saying: "I was confused about identity. I got it wrong."

Food blogger and anti-poverty campaigner Monroe did not appear to accept the correction was enough, saying: "15 days after accusing me of vandalising war graves & then prompting 577k followers to abuse me for entertainment… 'Confused' defence might have held water if we hadn't actually met, and she didn't have a history of seeking me out to direct barbed tweets… Eg she deadnamed me at the Ch5 Benefits debate – she did a LOT of digging. Hard to be confused about something you've researched that hard."

Monroe is being represented by phone-hacking victim lawyer Mark Lewis, of Seddons, in her action over the May tweet. She is claiming £50,000 plus costs.

Press Gazette understands Hopkins (pictured), a Mail Online columnist, has not yet filed a defence, but the deadline for doing so has not yet passed. She is being represented by fellow hacking victim lawyer Charlotte Harris, of Kingsley Napley.

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