Martha Fairlie, reporting from the Royal Courts of Justice, explains what was revealed on day three of the trial
Rebekah Vardy became tearful several times in the witness box on a day at the High Court where she appeared to accept that her agent leaked information from Coleen Rooney’s private Instagram account to a newspaper.
During her third day in the witness box as part of her high-profile libel claim against Ms Rooney, Ms Vardy also told the court she did not reply to her agent Caroline Watt when she allegedly admitted leaking stories to The Sun in a WhatsApp chat.
Ms Vardy said that because she was busy bathing her children, she didn't challenge Ms Watt's message, which read "it was me".
It was Ms Vardy's final day in the witness box in what has been dubbed the "Wagatha Christie" case.
Ms Rooney, 36, said she had carried out a “sting operation” in which she planted "false stories" on her Instagram account, while limiting who could view them. She accused Ms Vardy, 40, of leaking the stories about her private life to the press.
Ms Vardy, who is married to Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy, denies leaking the posts and is suing her fellow footballer’s wife for libel.
On Thursday, Ms Rooney’s barrister brought up the 36-year-old's fake post about having a flooded basement following a storm in 2019.
David Sherborne said: “This is the ‘flooded basement’ post, and we can see in the… corner it was only seen by you, wasn’t it?”
“On the face of it, that is what it says,” Ms Vardy said, but would not be drawn into explicitly stating that no-one else had seen the post.
What else happened on day three of the hearing?
Ms Rooney's barrister Mr Sherborne discussed an interview Ms Vardy gave to the Daily Mail on the subject of Ms Rooney's "sting operation" post. When asked by the journalist if the pair had argued, Ms Vardy said: “That would be like arguing with a pigeon. You can tell it that you are right and it is wrong, but it’s still going to s*** in your hair.”
Ms Vardy denied “orchestrating” a photo of footballers’ wives and girlfriends at the 2018 World Cup. In response to the claim from Mr Sherborne, Ms Vardy said her agent had arranged for a photographer to take pictures of her as she left her hotel, but denied giving the photographer the location of the restaurant she went to on the same evening with a group of the England team’s partners.
Ms Vardy became tearful several times in the witness box. Questioned about alleged inconsistencies in her evidence, Ms Vardy replied, “there was a lot of abuse during that time”, before she started to cry. As the judge left the room after granting a short break, a tearful Ms Vardy put her head in her hands on the desk.
Ms Vardy was watched throughout her evidence by Ms Rooney, sitting beside her husband Wayne.
The court previously heard that both women have spent “hundreds of thousands of pounds” on the case so far, with the total costs of the case expected to be at least £2 million.
The libel battle comes after Ms Rooney publicly claimed an account behind three fake stories she had posted on her personal Instagram account with The Sun newspaper was Ms Vardy’s.
The fake stories Ms Rooney planted on her Instagram during the sting operation featured her travelling to Mexico for a “gender selection” procedure, her planning to return to TV, and the basement flooding at her home.
In the post on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook, she wrote: “I have saved and screenshotted all the original stories which clearly show just one person has viewed them.
“It’s ………. Rebekah Vardy’s account.”
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