As recriminations continue over Number 10's e-mail smear campaign, with Tory MP Nadine Dorries launching a claim for defamation against Damian 'Spawn of the Devil' McBride, it emerges that his colleague Derek Draper has lost a libel action against rival blogger Thatcher's_Snatch.
The High Court heard that Thatcher's_Snatch called Draper a 'thick, fat northern twat' and alleged that his partner, 'GMTV dolly bird Kate Gerraway', was only interested in him for his money.
Draper sued on the grounds that the comment was regionalist, weightist and discriminated against stupid people, a large number of whom can be found in the north. He also complained that he possessed no money and had, in fact, wooed Ms. Gerraway with the aid of hypnotism and blackmail.
Releasing his opinion, Judge Sir Armitage Shanks, formerly a noted QC and WC, determined that the substance of the description was entirely factual, and therefore could not be construed as libel.
"Mr. Draper is clearly not the brightest bulb in the chandelier," said Sir Armitage, "I have heard him on the Today programme and he sounds wholly retarded to me."
Addressing subsequent points, Sir Armitage continued: "Mr. Draper is quite evidently overweight and somewhat resembles former Newcastle forward Micky Quinn, a footballer known throughout the land as 'You fat bastard'. As for the 'northern' reference, I understand Mr. Draper was born in Chorley, Lancashire, although he now chooses to reside in Hampstead. As a Pontefract man myself, I might well be tempted to call him a 'soft southern ponce', but that is what free speech is all about."
At this point, Ms. Gerraway attempted to intervene on behalf of her beau, insisting that he was an honest man whose intentions were good.
"Pah!" cried Sir Armitage. "Is she not flagrant? This man worked for Lord Mandelson! He is most certainly NOT misunderstood."
Judge Shanks was, however, momentarily vexed by the use of the word 'twat'.
"Clearly we should infer that the accused was not implying that Mr. Draper physically resembles a mons pubis, although in a certain light, given his unfortunate facial sproutings, this could be a legitimate defence. No, I must go by the alternative definition in the Oxford English Dictionary of 'an obnoxious or stupid person'. Anyone who has accessed the LabourList website - with one headline reading 'The Equalities Bill is an extremely positive one' (sic) - must acknowledge the verisimilitude of the original 'blog'. We award all costs to Thatcher's_Snatch."
The blogger behind Thatcher's_Snatch, 38-year old mature student Melvin Snetterton, was delighted with the verdict. "Sir Armitage attends my father's Lodge in Staines," he said, "so it is only right and proper that I should be acquitted."
Mr. Draper, for possibly the first time in his life, declined to comment.
A northerner, asked his opinion solely for the sake of balance, would only remark, "I heard he was some sort of psycho rapist. I don't know 'owt else about him but he's not welcome in Chorley."