Colin Rooney and Rebecca Vardy kept the libel verdict in the dark for fear they might leak it

Judge Wagatha Christie last night refused to give Rebecca Vardy and Colin Rooney advance notice of their libel verdict so no one would be tempted to leak it.

This afternoon, Mrs. Justice Stein is due to publicly announce the result of a three-year battle between the warring Wags for £3 million.

Dan Charity

Judge Wagatha Christie refused to give Rebecca Vardy and Colin Rooney advance notice of their libel verdict so that no one would be tempted to leak it.[/caption]

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Paul Edwards

The result of the £3m libel battle will be announced at noon.[/caption]

Colin, 36, is suing Rebecca, 40, after accusing her on social media of leaking stories to the press. In May, the two women met face to face in the High Court.

Colleen reflected on the battle and privately told her friends, “Whatever the referee decides, I’ve already won.”

Colin, 36, said last night that she was “completely confident” of winning.

A source close to the mother-of-four said: “She believes the evidence presented in court supported her version that Becky knew about the leaks to the press – and approved them.”

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Colin and Rebecca – the wife of former England striker Jamie, 35 – were hoping to get an advance copy of the ruling.

But Ms. Judge Stein, who presided over the trial, took the highly unusual step of insisting that it be kept secret.

The couple will find out who won this morning and they may only have an hour to process her decision.

Last night, stunned legal sources said the judge acted to eliminate the temptation of either side to reveal the result early. One of them said: “In most cases, the parties, or at least their lawyers, are informed in advance of the results.


“It can be from 24 hours to a week.

“This is entirely up to the discretion of the judge, but allows the participants to consider their legal position, especially in a high-profile case like this. In this case, it was completely refuted – and they won’t know the result until morning.”

Yesterday Colleen enjoyed a modest family dinner in Manchester, nervously waiting for the outcome.

Her husband, 36-year-old former English football ace Wayne – the new coach of DC United in Washington – flew in from the US to be with her. The Wags’ fight in the High Court in May came after a 2019 Instagram post by Colleen in which the public dubbed her Wagatha Christie.

In it, she accused Rebecca of being behind the leak of information to the press about her personal life after conducting a special “investigation” operation.

Rebecca then sued Colin over this claim. A source close to Colin said: “She never wanted the case to go to trial, but now that it has, she feels completely justified by the whole process.

She says it couldn’t have been better.

“If the judge does not agree, so be it, but it is not essential.

“Colene says she achieved what she set out to achieve and won, no matter the outcome. The public saw it for themselves, and that’s all Colin wanted.

She believes that the evidence presented to the court supported her version that Becky knew about the leaks to the press and approved of them.


Source close to Colin Rooney

“Becky filed a libel suit to restore her reputation, but within a week she dealt him a huge blow with a sledgehammer.

“Colin stands by what she said. She feels that everything that has surfaced in court completely strengthens her position.

“It didn’t have to go that far, but now she’s completely satisfied that she can walk away with her head held high.”

Legal experts said last night that even if mother-of-five Becky wins, she may only be entitled to £1 in compensation as she admitted to leaking information about others.

Media lawyer Mark Stevens CBE of Howard Kennedy said: “If the sting of the slander is true in that Rebecca Vardy is the usual source of information, then Colin Rooney is probably winning.

“Even if Rebekah wins, her damage will be very low. It can be as little as £1, which is the modern equivalent of a farthing.

“If she is awarded that level of damages, she will end up paying the other party’s legal fees.”

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He added: “In the court of public opinion, Rebecca Vardy did herself a disservice with her testimony.

“The only winners here are lawyers who are going to install Vardi or Rooney extensions in their homes.”

HOW WAGATHA TURNED UP

PAUL SIMS

COLIN Rooney’s dramatic 230-word Instagram post kicked off one of the most exciting defamation battles of all time.

She told how she suspected someone she trusted of leaking her personal information to the press.

She detailed the complex trap she had set up to expose the demon, and ended with four words: “This…. . . Rebecca Vardy account.

On the morning of October 9, 2019, Vagata Christie was born.

For her part, Colin, 36, hated the nickname but kept screenshots of her mock-up in a Scooby-Doo detective and on the cover of an Agatha Christie crime novel.

Becky, 40, was pregnant and vacationing in Dubai with her husband, Jamie, 35, when it all started.

She sent Colin a WhatsApp demanding, “What is this?”

A few days later, Colleen received a letter from a leading law firm that Becky had assigned to start a libel suit.

Since then, the couple have exchanged documents, failed to resolve the conflict out of court and spent about £3 million.

Their blockbuster battle finally made it to the High Court in May.

Text messages between Becky and her agent Caroline Watt, 40, revealed their apparent willingness to tell football stories.

And they were accused of hatching a plan for photographers to take pictures of English wagons outside a restaurant at the 2018 FIFA World Cup.

Becky dismissed the messages as jokes and gossip before painfully turning around as they were read aloud in court.

Colleen followed the weeping Becky into the witness box.

Outside of court, Jamie accused Wayne of “talking bullshit” and Wayne branded his former teammate a “bottler” for refusing to testify under oath.

For a neutral, it had everything.

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Simon Jones

The 36-year-old mother of four, Colin, is said to be “supremely confident” of winning.[/caption]

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Company

This followed a post by Colleen Wagatha in 2019 in which she accused Rebecca of being behind a press leak following a sting operation.[/caption]

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Reuters

Colin and Rebecca’s husbands are former England teammates Jamie Vardy (left) and Wayne Rooney (right).[/caption]

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Yesterday Colleen was relaxing at a trendy caravan park in Wales.[/caption]

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Rebecca Vardy is vacationing in the Algarve.[/caption]

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Wayne, 36, the new DC United coach, flew in from the US to be with her.[/caption]

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Rebecca sued Colin for defamation in response to allegations[/caption]

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