Justice Navindra Singh on Friday ordered writer Ruel Johnson to pay former Bishops’ High School teacher Coen Jackson $5 million in damages for defamation. The Judge also awarded costs against him in the sum of $1 million which has to be paid on or before January 7, 2022.
Jackson through his lawyer, Attorneys-at-Law Nigel Hughes, and Savannah Barnwell, claimed damages for defamation against Johnson who published several false and derogatory statements about him on his Facebook page. The lawsuit was filed in March 2019.
The Judge, in his ruling, held that Johnson’s statements attacked Jackson’s integrity “labeling him as a pedophile who actively pursued children to satisfy this sexual perversion, which is criminal conduct.”
According to the Judge, Johnson did so without setting out, factually, any conduct of Jackson that justifies such a comment. Johnson was represented by Attorney-at-Law Ganesh Hira.
Jackson is currently awaiting trial at the Demerara High Court for the offence of sexual activity with a child under the age of 16. He is accused of committing the offence against an underage girl 10 years ago. He has been granted cash bail pending the hearing and determination of the trial.