Rebekah Vardy has insisted she was ‘joking’ as text messages to her agent regarding the alleged ‘leaking’ of stories about celebrities were read in court.
Rebekah has again taken to the stand to give evidence in the ‘Wagatha Christie’ trial being heard at the High Court.
Rebekah, the wife of Leicester City footballer Jamie Vardy, is suing Coleen Rooney for libel after she accused her on Twitter of leaking her private information about her to the press.
Today, Wednesday, 11 May, Rebekah is being cross-examined by David Sherborne, who is representing Coleen in the case.
Rebekah has admitted “gossiping” and sharing sometimes “outrageous” and “totally inappropriate” messages with her agent and pal Caroline Watt about fellow celebrities. But she has again strenuously denied the suggestion she ever leaked information about them.
During this morning’s session of evidence, Rebekah was asked about a message sent to agent Caroline in September 2018.
“Omg have you seen how badly Mrs F is behaving. Leak the story about her s**gging G behind H’s back,” it read.
Caroline replied saying she had tried to before but a national newspaper she tipped off had not run it because they could not prove it. Rebekah replied saying: “urgh.”
Mrs F was a well-known celebrity, Mr H was her estranged husband and Mr G was a well-known footballer, Rebekah told the court.
“I was absolutely disgusted with her” Rebekah said when asked why she had sent the message.
“I was a bit shocked and a bit disgusted with what I had seen in the paper.”
She was in fact telling Caroline to leak the story Mr Sherborne suggested.
“That’s the way it reads. But in context, I was just joking about that one” Rebekah said.
She said she and Caroline were old friends and their messages were often “outrageous” and “totally inappropriate.”
“These are a lot of conversations between friends gossiping and poking fun at people” she added.
“They do not read very well but there are always explanations for them.”
Rebekah went on to deny a claim from Coleen’s lawyer that it was “standard practice” for her to leak private information to The Sun via her agent.
Whilst being questioned over the alleged leak of a story about a footballer, referred to in court only as Mr X, being unfaithful, Mr Sherborne said: “That was standard practice, wasn’t it, that you gave information to Ms Watt and she would give it to the Sun?”
“No,” she replied, adding she had “never” given information to a named journalist at The Sun.
Earlier, Rebekah was asked about messages sent to Caroline Watt in February 2018 claiming that husband Jamie’s ex-Leicester City teammate Riyad Mahrez had not turned up to training for the second day running.
Mahrez was seeking a move away from Leicester to Manchester City at the time, and Rebekah messaged Caroline saying: “Mahrez not turned up to training again. The lads are fuming.”
This was her spilling dressing room secrets and urging Caroline to leak the information, Mr Sherborne suggested.
“It does not look good there,” Rebekah said. “I was gossiping about things that were in the public domain.
“It’s pretty much unheard of that a player would go on strike and not turn up to train. It was just gossip.”
Caroline suggested to her client that she should tip off Sky Sports, the court heard, and Rebekah messaged back saying: “I just don’t want it coming back on me.””
An exclusive story then appeared in a national newspaper saying Mahrez had not turned up to training and “his Leicester team mates have turned on the want away forward and were thought to feel betrayed by his behaviour,” Mr Sherborne said.
He said every other newspaper had only reported the club’s response without the suggestion the players were angry with Mahrez, and accused Rebekah of being responsible for the leak.
However, she insisted: “This has absolutely nothing to do me.”
Rebekah continued: “I absolutely know 100% that story did not come from me or Caroline Watt. It was already out there.”
Mr Sherborne said “we will never know” what actually happened because Caroline’s phone “sits at the bottom of the North Sea.” “Yes” Rebekah replied.
Coleen is in court today, accompanied by her husband former Manchester United footballer and now Derby County manager Wayne Rooney, with the pair sat on the front row around 15feet from Rebekah as she gives her evidence in the wood-paneled Victorian-era courtroom.
Rebekah is claiming damages from Coleen over the “untrue and unjustified defamatory attack” on her in 2019.
During the first day of the trial, Rebekah said she will “never forgive” Coleen after she “ruined” the last weeks of her pregnancy by going public with her accusation.
Rebekah said the impact of the claim was “traumatic” for her and her family and that she was “genuinely scared that I might lose my baby as a result of the stress I was under in the days and weeks after the post.
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