Mysterious claimant to reveal true identity in case against Google

Judith Thompson

In a rather bizarre case, a litigant in person has somehow for 9 months been involved in a case against Google without revealing his identity to anyone, even the judge.

The man, only known as "ABC", has miraculously been able to keep his real name unknown from the court despite an order from the court back in December 2017 for ABC to reveal his identify.

ABC is bringing a claim against a website that is owned by Google for malicious falsehood and defamation.  His reasoning for not wanting to reveal his true name is because he fears he will then be a target through Google's ‘Lumen Database’ that records all takedown requests made to Google.

Having failed to reveal his identity as ordered, Mr Justice Nicklin had this to say: "I've never encountered a case in which one party has not known the identity of the other party… you’ve got seven days to give the defendants your name ... If you fail to do that I’m going to strike your action out.”

It appears as though the court is no longer amused by ABCs refusal to give his full name and has given him the ultimatum of revealing his identity or having his entire claim struck out.

Whether or not ABC will comply with the court's order is yet to be seen but this case demonstrates that unless the court believes there is a genuine risk to the claimant, they have no grounds to refuse to give their identity to both the court and the defendants.

Samuels Solicitors LLP deals with a wide range of reputation management issues, including libel, slander and the right to be forgotten.

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