Rebekah Vardy has won the first round of her legal battle against Coleen Rooney.
The WAG is suing her former pal for damages, after Coleen publicly accused Rebekah of selling fake stories about her.
Last year, the wife of Wayne Rooney claimed she planted false information on her private Instagram page and blocked everyone from her story – except Rebekah’s account.
The mother-of-four said stories about her basement flooding, returning to TV, and gender selection were only viewed by Rebekah’s account – and the false stories all made it into the press.
Coleen believed this was proof that the fellow WAG allegedly sold stories about her private life, but Rebekah has vehemently denied her claims.
Taking to Instagram at the time, Coleen wrote: “For a few years now someone who I trusted to follow me on my personal Instagram account has been consistently informing The Sun newspaper of my private posts and stories.”
“I have saved and screenshotted all the original stories which clearly show just one person has viewed them.”
“It’s ……………. Rebekah Vardy’s account,” she added.
Following a High Court hearing in London on Thursday, Mr Justice Warby sided with Rebekah by agreeing that Coleen’s post directly pointed the finger at her.
Coleen must now prove Rebekah was really behind the leaked stories, in order to defend the lawsuit against her.
In a judgement today, the judge said: “This was, on its face, a considered post, using wording composed with some care.”
“It would be clear to the ordinary reader from the outset that it was meant seriously, and intended to convey a message of some importance. It tells a story.”
“The story is one of careful investigation, and builds to a revelation. The reader would pay more attention to this story than they might to a more obviously casual tweet or post.”
The judge also rejected an argument that Coleen only referred to Rebekah’s Instagram account in her social media statement, rather than her as a person.
The judge ruled: “I certainly do not think that the ordinary reader would take that single word (account), albeit repeated, to indicate that Mrs Rooney remains in doubt about who the wrongdoer was.”
“There is nothing in these words, apart from the word ‘account’, that in any way suggests that the behaviour of which Mrs Rooney is complaining might have been carried out by anyone other than the account holder, Mrs Vardy.”
“I do not believe or assume that anything done on social media in the name of a personality might be done by someone else, without the knowledge or approval of the account holder,” he continued.
“Nor do I believe that everyone thinks or believes or assumes these things. It is more likely that there is a range of facts, and a range of opinions, with some cynics thinking every tweet by every celebrity is made up by some PR and others naively believing that every such tweet is always the celebrity’s own unassisted work.”
The judge also granted costs of £22,913.50 to Rebekah, pending the end of the trial.
Today, the court also heard that both parties have agreed to delay proceedings until February, so there could be “one final attempt to resolve the matter without the need for a full trial”.