The Mclibel Trial

Topics: McDonald's, McDonald's Restaurants v Morris & Steel, Jury Pages: 3 (852 words) Published: January 4, 2012
The McLibel Trial started was one of the most famous British court cases, it was contested between McDonalds and two environmental activists called Helen Steel and David Morris. Mcdonalds took the two activists to court after the produced a leaflet scrutinising their company and their policies. Although big companies, such as the Guardian have apologised to McDonalds in the past, Helen and David were different. They saw this as a challenge to put a stop to the intimidation and control large global companies can assert on the public. Even before the trial Mcdonalds sent people to spy on their Greenpeace organisation to see exactly what was happening. The defendants were denied legal aid and right to have a jury which was seen to be unfair by Helen and David. However they proceeded to represent themselves to the the judge, Mr Justice Bell. They were up against an experienced team of lawyers, who cost Mcdonalds thousands of pounds each day. Mcdonalds believed that this trial would be a formality, last only a few weeks. In fact the case became the longest ever English trial, running for two and a half years, therefore completely taking over the defendants lives. Although Mcdonalds had a large and feared legal team, Helen and David were supported by many professionals, some scientists even flew from America to give evidence. It became clear that the public were beginning to back their opinions. The media started becoming more interested with the case as it progressed and became clear it was not going to be as straight forward as Mcdonalds first thought. As the trial ran on it exhausted the defendants both physically and mentally because they constantly had to research and present their arguments independently. The trial progressed to such a state that Mcdonalds sent an advisor to try and sort out the case out of court. Even though a settlement was proposed, the defendants refused and saw this as a sign of weakness by Mcdonalds, thus giving them more encouragement to...
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