The defamation action successfully brought by Leonard Katz against Martin Welz and Chaucer Publications has been settled on the basis that Mr Welz and Chaucer Publications withdraw their appeal, retract the defamatory statements made, apologise unreservedly to Mr Katz and will make a substantial contribution towards Mr Katz’s costs.
In July and August 2014, Noseweek and its editor, Martin Welz, published an article as well as an editorial in its magazine, and on its website, under cover of the tagline “The man who stole justice” which contained various false and defamatory statements concerning Mr Leonard Katz of ENSafrica. These statements asserted or suggested, amongst other things, that Mr Katz is a dishonourable attorney who subverts the course of justice and, for a price, will manufacture facts and/or manipulate the legal system to secure advantages for his clients to which they are not lawfully entitled. Mr Katz was accused of being a “fraud salesman”. It was also asserted or suggested that Mr Katz charges fees to which he and/or his firm, ENSafrica are not entitled and double charges.
Mr Katz successfully sued Noseweek and Mr Welz, the writer and editor, for defamation.
During the trial Mr Welz was constrained to concede that before publication at least certain of the statements were known by him to be false. The statements concerning Mr Katz were published without recording Mr Katz’s response to the allegations, which were set out in court papers in Mr Welz’s possession, and without seeking his comment prior to publication. These were serious omissions in terms of the law of defamation and the Press Code.
Mr Martin Welz, and Chaucer Publications, the publisher of Noseweek, unreservedly retract the false and defamatory statements in the offending articles and editorial and apologise unreservedly for any harm caused to Mr Katz and to ENSafrica.
See the Settlement Agreement (achieved thanks to the mediation of Richard Spoor) at: https://noseweek.co.za/wp/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/Katz_v_Welz_Settlement.pdf
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