How The Sun, supported by Press Association, won three-month legal battle to report on Liam Gallagher divorce

News that a family court judge has ruled on how rock star Liam Gallagher and ex-wife Nicole Appleton should split assets of £11m emerged following a three-month legal fight by The Sun.

Barrister Jacob Dean, who represented the newspaper's publisher, News Group Newspapers, began the battle in September after Sun journalists learned that Gallagher and Appleton (pictured, Reuters) were embroiled in a cash dispute at a trial in the Central Family Court in London.

Dean initially argued, at a hearing in the Family Division of the High Court in London, that evidence given to Judge Martin O'Dwyer at the trial could and should be reported.

A High Court judge ruled against him after lawyers representing Gallagher and Appleton raised concerns.

But Mr Justice Mostyn said the fact that the celebrity couple were fighting over money could be reported.

It was also up to Judge O'Dwyer to decide that parts of his ruling on the case could be made public.

Judge O'Dwyer announced in early December that he had produced a ruling on the dispute.

And in the week before Christmas Dean persuaded the Judge, and Gallagher and Appleton's lawyers, that large parts of the ruling should be published and reported.

Judge O'Dwyer agreed that the public could be told how he had split the pair's £11m assets in half and how the pair spent £800,000 on lawyers during their battle.

His ruling also revealed detail of Gallagher's thoughts on his future in music and detail behind the couple's marriage breakdown.

Publication of the ruling triggered media coverage around the world.

The Sun was supported throughout the discussions on reporting of the case by the Press Association.

Its reporter, Brian Farmer, made submissions to Mr Justice Mostyn from the press bench, and legal editor Mike Dodd then made written submissions to Judge O'Dwyer, arguing that large parts of his ruling could and should be made public.

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