Image by Skellig2008 via FlickrAfter a 12-day trial, an eight-member jury has awarded former Superior Court Judge Leon Kendall $240,000 in his libel case against The Virgin Islands Daily News, reports Media Law blogger Bob Ambrogi (www.legaline.com).
Kendall, who retired from the bench in 2009, was still a sitting judge when he brought suit in October 2007, against Daily News Publishing Co., and reporters Joy Blackburn and Joseph Tsidulko based on 16 articles and an editorial calling for Kendall to resign that appeared in the Daily News between 2005-2009. Among other issues, the Daily News was critical of Judge Kendall's handling of two criminal cases. The jury found in Tsidulko's favor, but against the paper and Blackburn. The Daily News is expected to appeal the verdict.
Judge Kendall was represented by Boston litigator Howard Cooper, who is currently suing The Boston Herald for libel on behalf of his client, the rock group Boston's co-founder Tom Scholz (see "TUOL" post 3/18/10).