Who? Persephone Bridgman Baker, associate at London firm Carter-Ruck.
Why is she in the news? Acted for Lance Bombardier Kerry-Ann Morris, who received a public apology at the High Court in London last week. Morris obtained compensation and costs after a defamatory article was published on the Nottingham Post’s website in June 2015. The article featured a photograph wrongly identifying Morris as her non-identical twin sister, who was tried over the death of a seven-year-old girl.
Thoughts on the case: ‘Ensuring accuracy in journalism is vital in today’s press-driven society and a core aspect of our media practice at Carter-Ruck. While not landmark in terms of legal principle, this case was a true example of proper vindication for a woman whose life was very really affected by a defamation. This case drove home how profoundly distressing defamation can be: affecting a career, personal relationships and confidence. This is only compounded by the speed and reach of digital media.’
Dealing with the media: ‘We obviously dealt with the media in a very singular way in this case: as our opponent. The original article was quickly reproduced by a number of news outlets and we had to work quickly to secure Google takedowns.’
Why become a lawyer: ‘Both my parents are lawyers. I should say they inspired me, but mainly they taught me it was normal to argue in numbered paragraphs!’
Career high: ‘Securing the international arrest of an individual who had breached employer confidentiality in valuable trade secrets. He fled the UK, and we followed in hot pursuit to Hong Kong to obtain an emergency injunction. He was arrested, extradited and we conducted complicated concurrent civil and criminal proceedings, resulting in a successful prosecution for fraud and computer misuse offences here in London.’
Career low: ‘Being caught in the crossfire when a sleep-deprived barrister threw an iPhone in frustration. It broke the tension and the screen! And then there’s the everyday challenge of spelling my full name over the telephone.’