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Last Updated: Sunday, 22 January 2006, 23:11 GMT
Bid to delay Barrymore legal case
Michael Barrymore
Mr Barrymore is unaware of the legal action
Lawyers are trying to get legal proceedings against Michael Barrymore adjourned until he emerges from the Celebrity Big Brother house.

The entertainer is unaware the family of Stuart Lubbock - who died in his swimming pool - is proceeding with a private prosecution against him.

Big Brother makers Endemol Productions have not given legal representatives access to Mr Barrymore during the show.

Solicitors acting for his partner have now asked a judge to delay the case.

Open verdict

Mr Lubbock, 31, a meat factory worker from Harlow, Essex, died after a party at Mr Barrymore's home in Roydon, Essex, in March 2001.

An open verdict was recorded at his inquest, which heard he had suffered severe internal injuries.

Last week, Tony Bennett, a solicitor acting on behalf of the Lubbock family, appeared before Judge John Greaves at Epping Magistrates' Court in Essex, and received permission to proceed against Mr Barrymore.

The judge adjourned proceedings so the entertainer could be informed of the action.

Access denied

Now, a letter has been sent by solicitors Corker Binning - acting for Mr Barrymore's long-term partner Shaun Davis - asking Judge Greaves to delay considering whether to summons the entertainer until two weeks after he leaves the house.

The show finishes on 27 January.

This, the firm says, will "allow him (Mr Barrymore) to give instructions in relation to the application".

In the letter, Corker Binning states: "We have contacted the production company responsible for Big Brother, Endemol Productions, and requested that we be granted access to Mr Barrymore to take his instructions.

"Endemol have written to us refusing to grant us such access."

The firm says it cannot accept papers on Mr Barrymore's behalf.

New Barrymore pool death inquiry
14 Jan 03 |  UK News

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