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The BBC's Robert Hall
"This was another black day"
 real 56k

Neil Hamilton
responds to the judgment
 real 56k

Tuesday, 22 May, 2001, 12:58 GMT 13:58 UK
Hamilton declared bankrupt
Neil Hamilton with his wife Christine
Neil Hamilton owes an estimated 3m in legal fees
Former Tory MP and junior minister Neil Hamilton has been declared bankrupt at a county court hearing.

The bankruptcy petition was brought by Mohammed al-Fayed following Mr Hamilton's defeat in a libel action against the Harrods owner.

Mr al-Fayed had accused the former MP of taking cash for asking questions in the House of Commons.

Mohammed al-Fayed
Mohammed al-Fayed brought the order
Mr Hamilton, who subsequently lost an appeal against the decision, is understood to owe about 3m in legal costs.

The hearing was held at Macclesfield County Court in Cheshire.

Mr Hamilton's home, which he shares with his wife Christine, near David and Victoria Beckham's house, in Nether Alderley, Cheshire, is currently on the market for 1.25m.

Speaking after the hearing, Mr Hamilton, accompanied by Christine, said: "I am here for two reasons.

"Firstly Fayed, my sole creditor, issued a petition for my bankruptcy as an act of revenge knowing he would get nothing out of it.

"Secondly the Court of Appeal failed to protect my right to a fair trial."

Mr Hamilton said the Court of Appeal had refused to quash the cost order despite hearing evidence that Mr Al Fayed had access to stolen documents.


I now intend to take the court case to the European Court of Human Rights

Neil Hamilton
Mr Al Fayed had denied any knowledge of the documents.

Mr Hamilton added: "I have not been able to find justice in England.

"I now intend to take the court case to the European Court of Human Rights."

Mr Hamilton lost his Tatton seat in the last election to BBC correspondent Martin Bell, who stood as an independent anti-sleaze candidate.

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