Fans start fighting fund for under-fire blogger

SUPPORT Mike Hall at a Pompey SOS meeting
SUPPORT Mike Hall at a Pompey SOS meeting
Kenny Jackett. Picture: Joe Pepler

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SUPPORTERS have set up a fighting fund after a well-known Pompey blogger was threatened with court action.

Mike Hall has been sent warning letters from a top city law firm over a blog he posted on fansnetwork.co.uk last month.

It concerned investment banker Pascal Najadi, part of the Keith Harris consortium which put in a rival bid to the Pompey Supporters’ Trust. Mr Najadi says he, his family and his company have been defamed by the post, which has since been taken down by the site.

But Mr Hall, from Gosport, strongly denies the claims and says he will fight court action.

Supporters have rallied round and within 24 hours more than £1,000 was donated to fight any action taken by the Kuala Lumpur-based Mr Najadi.

The legal fund has been set up by the outraged group SOS Pompey.

Carl Paddon, from the group, said: ‘Something needs to be done.

‘We’re just football fans at the end of the day. Those people bringing action against the likes of Mike have got money to burn and we’re not going to stand for it.’

Mr Hall said: ‘The support I’ve received has been fantastic. It’s really humbling.’

He added: ‘Everything I wrote in my blog was a matter of public record.

‘We’re going to go back and rebut every single word (in the solicitor’s letter).

‘Why go around publicising the fact they’re taking this Draconian, oppressive act of censorship when they’re bad losers?’

The first Mr Hall knew about the action was on Thursday when he received an email from Mishcon de Reya telling him to apologise and pay damages to Mr Najadi and agree not republish the blog entry, with a deadline of midday Friday.

He sent them a holding email and received a second email from the solicitors on Friday saying legal proceedings had been issued against him in the High Court.

On Saturday, the solicitors sent out an email to another blogger giving details of action being taken against Mr Hall.

Pompey administrators PKF and the Football League have confirmed the PST is the preferred bidder to take over the club.

To donate to the fund email SOS_Pompey@hotmail.co.uk.