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Last Updated: Wednesday, 12 March 2008, 17:19 GMT
Man loses grape case against M&S
An accountant who claimed he injured himself by slipping on a grape in a Marks and Spencer car park has lost his High Court bid for damages.

Alexander Martin-Sklan, 55, from Golders Green, north London, was claiming 300,000 over the incident in his local store car park in June 2004.

He said a piece of fruit found on his shoe after the fall could have been picked up inside the store or car park.

The judge ruled in favour of the retail giant which was contesting the action.

In my judgment it is one of those accidents that could happen to any one of us
Deputy Judge John Leighton Williams QC

Mr Martin-Sklan tore a tendon in his right leg when he slipped as he left the Finchley Road store with his trolley and headed to his car.

Representing himself, he said he suffered a ruptured quadricep tendon and "adverse psychological effects and depression" arising from the injury.

Whilst expressing sympathy for the claimant Deputy Judge John Leighton Williams QC said: "I am afraid I am unable to find for him on the evidence."

He said: "In my judgment it is one of those accidents that could happen to any one of us."

The judge said he had concluded there was some sort of crushed fruit or similar on the underside of Mr Martin-Sklan's right sandal.

But, he was "not persuaded" the substance in the "void" of the sandal caused the claimant to slip.

Mr Martin-Sklan has to pay around 15,000 towards Marks and Spencer's costs and given 28 days to pay an interim sum of 7,500.


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