Absence of malice kills libel suit against Rafe Mair

The Supreme Court dismissed libel charges against BC radio host Rafe Mair today, citing fair comment and absence of malice in his remarks. While his comments were the typically outrageous expected from Mr. Mair, nevertheless the justices overturned a lower court ruling.

The court also modified a key component of the fair comment defence that the person making the comment must honestly believe in it.

The court said that the test of honest belief is not to be based on whether the specific person holding the opinion believed it. Rather, the statement should be evaluated on the basis of whether any person might honestly hold the view based on the facts at issue.

CTV, June 27, 2008

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