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Craig celebrates settlement with Stringer

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 31/01/2017 Sean Martin

Colin Craig says he's celebrating after reaching a settlement in a defamation case against former Conservative Party board member John Stringer, including a confidential payout.

Former Conservative leader Mr Craig was suing Mr Stringer for defamation over what he called a "relentless succession of publications in various media" in 2015, surrounding Mr Craig's resignation from the party amid allegations of sexual harassment against his press secretary, Rachel MacGregor.

The case was meant to got to a judge-alone trial in March, but in a judgment on Tuesday, the High Court at Christchurch said the parties had reached a confidential settlement.

The deal includes a confidential payout, a retraction of Mr Stringer's comments and an apology to Mr Craig.

"Obviously I am very happy to have concluded one of the legal battles with a clear and final result," Mr Craig said in a statement.

Mr Craig, who represented himself, said he would be asking media to take down the comments made by Mr Stringer.

The settlement comes just months after Mr Craig lost a defamation action brought by Taxpayers' Union executive director Jordan Williams, and was ordered to pay a record $1.27 million.

In October last year the Human Rights Tribunal also ordered Mr Craig to pay Ms MacGregor nearly $129,000 for the "severe humiliation" he had caused her for breaching a confidentiality agreement.

In December, Mr Craig's copyright lawsuit against blogger Cameron Slater and Mr Williams over the publication of a poem Mr Craig wrote to Ms MacGregor was thrown out of court.

Comment has been sought from Mr Stringer.

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