High Court Judge Orders Singapore Influencer Rachel Wong To Surrender Correspondence In Defamation Case
There’s been a development in the ongoing saga between Singapore influencer Rachel Wong and Olivia Wu, the woman who accused her of infidelity. Time to grab the popcorn.
If you need a quick catch-up on what’s been going on, you can read about it here.
In a nutshell, Wu alleged that Wong had cheated on her ex-husband, national footballer Anders Aplin, with two men. Wong sued Wu for defamation, saying that these accusations damaged her reputation as a full-time social media influencer.
To prepare for the trial, Wu is seeking Wong’s diary entries and correspondence with the two men she supposedly had affairs with. Wong appealed to get the courts to block Wu’s access to these materials, but she failed. Twice.
Recently, the High Court upheld a lower court’s decision to grant Wu access to the documents. However, what seems to be getting the Internet’s attention is the judge’s written verdict, which contains some pretty savage quotes.
Guess influencer drama just isn’t his thing.
Judge dismisses Rachel Wong’s appeal to block Olivia Wu’s access to correspondence
Back in February, a district court registrar approved Wu’s application to gain access to the following materials:
- Correspondence between Wong and Mr Han from Jun 2016 to Jun 2020
- Correspondence between Wong and Mr Wan from Jun 2018 to Jun 2020
- Wong’s diary entries allegedly implicating Mr Wan from Jun 2018 to Jun 2020
Mr Han was Wong’s gym trainer, while Mr Wan was the emcee at her and Aplin’s wedding. Wu accused Wong of cheating on Aplin with these two men.
Wong’s lawyer opposed the decision, calling it a “fishing expedition” that would violate his client’s privacy, TODAY reported.
However, according to The Straits Times (ST), Wong failed in her appeal in April. She decided to try appealing again, this time to the High Court.
It did not work.
On Tuesday (28 Jun), High Court judge Choo Han Teck dismissed Wong’s appeal. He agreed that Wu had managed to demonstrate that the items she was looking for were relevant for the trial.
High Court Justice delivers savage statements in judgement
Beyond the case itself, what really seems to be stealing the spotlight amidst the saga’s latest update is Justice Choo’s absolutely savage written judgement, which you can read in full on the eLitigation website.
The verdict contains a number of quotable quotes that suggest how done he is with all this drama.
Right off the bat, Justice Choo takes an indirect but completely scathing jab at Wong, the plaintiff in this case.
The plaintiff describes herself as “a full-time social media influencer, actress, model and host”. She maintains an Instagram account that she claims has 41,400 followers. That, I suppose, entitles her, in her estimation, to be a celebrity.
He added that Wong “was offended by a post made by the defendant on Instagram”, referring to Wu.
Judge roasts Wong’s counsel
Even Wong’s legal team was not spared from the judge’s brutal comments. Stating that the narrative they presented “is not clear”, he wrote,
By a combination of Instagram-speak and the utter failure of counsel to translate that into English, the Statement of Claim is filled with chaff.
‘Chaff‘ is basically a fancy way of saying ‘rubbish’.
For example, he shared that Wong’s counsel had reproduced what Wu wrote in the Statement of Claim with bolded and underlined text. Justice Choo clarified,
It is hard to tell whether the emphasis represented counsel’s excitement or outrage, but such emphasis is not necessary in pleadings.
He even corrected Wong’s counsel’s English, pointing out that they must’ve wanted to write “marrying Anders” instead of “marrying her ex-husband, Anders”.
Justice Choo then explained his reason for dismissing Wong’s appeal, making a reference to her attorney’s earlier “fishing expedition” argument,
In this case, samples of relevant material had been produced, and, just to extend the fishing analogy just a bit more, it is not a mere fishing expedition if fish has in fact been spotted.
Do you smell that? That’s the sizzling burn from Justice Choo’s very well-done roasts.
The Internet is loving the judge’s savagery
Redditors are also loving Justice Choo’s biting remarks.
Several users pointed out how easy it is to sense the judge’s frustration at having to deal with such a case.
Someone also posted the full judgement, saying that it’s worth reading “for the numerous sarcastic [one-liners]” from Justice Choo.
Xiaxue is apparently a fan too. She posted some of her favourite parts from the judgement in her Instagram stories and called Justice Choo her “new favourite person”.
Well, you have to admit that he did a wonderful job at delivering such brutal commentary in the most elegant way possible.
According to TODAY, Wong later released a statement through her lawyer expressing how “disappointed” she was with the outcome.
She also plans to go ahead with the lawsuit to “stand up for people who have been the subject of online abuse, harassment and defamation”.
Trial dates for the case have yet to be set.
The drama continues
With Wong determined to soldier on with the lawsuit, it looks like this won’t be the last we hear of the saga.
At least Justice Choo’s verdict managed to provide us with some entertainment.
Hopefully, the trial will shed light on the truth once and for all, and everyone involved can properly move on with their lives.
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