Labour’s Former Scottish Chief Wins Battle Over Homophobic Tweets

Labour’s former leader in Scotland has won her protected bitter defamation case over homophobic tweets.

The former Scottish Labour leader had been accused by Stuart Campbell, a pro-independence blogger, of making false statements about him.

Stuart Campbell, who runs the website Wings Over Scotland, attempted to sue the former Scottish Labour leader last year after she accused him of writing “homophobic tweets”.

But Sheriff Nigel Ross ruled Ms Dugdale did not have to pay damages following a three-day hearing in Edinburgh. 

He found that although she was incorrect to imply Mr Campbell was a homophobe in her Daily Record column, the article was covered by the defence of fair comment.

The legal row centres on a tweet Mr Campbell, 52, sent in March 2017.

He wrote that the former Scottish Secretary David Mundell’s son, the Tory MSP Oliver Mundell, was “the sort of public speaker that makes you wish his dad had embraced his homosexuality sooner”.

David Mundell came out as gay in 2016.

Writing in her Daily Record column a few days later, Ms Dugdale said she was “shocked and appalled to see a pro-independence blogger’s homophobic tweets”, and accused Wings Over Scotland of spouting “hatred and homophobia towards others”.

Mr Campbell strongly refutes this and accused her of defamation.

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