Although David Leigh suggested in his letter last week that I lacked
a sense of humour, his response did make me laugh. So, The Guardian
investigations editor was having a “joke” when he told Benji “the
binman” Pell, in a secretly taped conversation, to sell one of Neil
Hamilton’s legally privileged documents to Mohamed al Fayed.
Not even a New Labour spin-doctor, confronted with such taped evidence, would try that one.
Court of Appeal did find that Fayed would have successfully defended
Hamilton’s libel action without the stolen documents. But, contrary to
the impression that Leigh creates, it was unaware of – and made no
finding about – The Guardian journalist’s role in this odious affair.
was right about one thing. I do have a book to promote, and anyone
interested can read all about newspapers’ reliance on Benji’s smelly
exclusives. Contrary to Leigh’s mis-statement, what was sanctimonious
about The Guardian was how it “exposed” The Sunday Times for buying
material from Pell.
The most tawdry link with Pell was not The
Sunday Times, nor even any of the red-tops, but the holier-than-thou
Guardian. Still, if Leigh doesn’t enjoy his new career as a
spin-doctor, he could become a comedian.
Mark Watts Author, The Fleet Street Sewer Rat