// Sir Philip Green & Arcadia Group drop legal proceedings against The Telegraph
// Green was the centre of a #MeToo scandal that was sparked by the newspaper
// Green accused The Telegraph of “untold disruption” to the Arcadia business empire
Sir Philip Green has decided to discontinue his claim against The Daily Telegraph, after it was revealed last week that he was seeking damages for a story that placed him at the centre of a #MeToo scandal for the City.
In October last year, The Telegraph ran a front page article that levelled allegations towards an unnamed businessman for bullying, racially abusing and sexually harassing staff.
Lawyers representing Green’s Arcadia Group retail empire were granted an interim injunction that prevented the newspaper from naming him as the man in question.
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Days later, Lord Peter Hain used parliamentary privilege to identify him in the House of Lords, saying it was his duty to do so because of the “serious and repeated” nature of the allegations after he was contacted “by someone intimately involved in the case”.
The revelation subsequently dominated headlines for several weeks, and lead to renewed calls for Green’s knighthood to be stripped along with a social media campaign to boycott Topshop, which is owned by Arcadia.
Last week, it was revealed that Green was demanding The Telegraph reveal its sources, including two which had agreed non-disclosure agreements with Arcadia previously.
He also said the newspaper’s “behaviour” caused “untold disruption” to Arcadia and to the 20,000 people who work within it.
Green and his lawyers also accused The Telegraph of plotting with Hain due to the peer being an adviser to Gordon Dadds, the law firm which represented newspaper on the issue.
Both parties denied this.
A court date had been scheduled for February 4, but in a statement circulated this morning, Arcadia said it would seek the court’s permission to discontinue proceedings.
“After careful reflection, Arcadia and Sir Philip have therefore reluctantly concluded that it is pointless to continue with the litigation which has already been undermined by the deliberate and irresponsible actions of Lord Peter Hain, the paid consultant of The Telegraph’s lawyers Gordon Dadds, and risks causing further distress to the Arcadia’s employees,” Arcadia stated.
Meanwhile, Lord Hain, is thought to be being investigated by the House of Lords Commissioner for Standards over his conduct.
Green continues to deny the allegations made against him when they were revealed in October.
“Due to the ongoing confidentiality obligations and injunction still in place, Arcadia and Sir Philip cannot comment on the detail of any allegations, but confirm that any grievances are treated with the utmost seriousness and are investigated thoroughly in accordance with best practice,” Arcadia said.
It added: “Sir Philip categorically denies any unlawful racist or sexual behaviour.
“Sir Philip has been in business for over 45 years and has worked with tens of thousands of people all over the world.
“He has never before been involved in any complaints or claims like this in his entire career and is not guilty of unlawful sexual or racist behaviour.
“He has not previously been involved in executing any NDAs of this kind.”