Hockey slugged with big legal bill after defamation battle

TREASURER Joe Hockey has been ordered to pay 85% of his own legal costs from his defamation battle with Fairfax Media.

Federal Court Justice Richard White ruled on Wednesday that Fairfax should pay 15% of the cost of Mr Hockey's proceedings against The Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. The combined legal bill of both parties is more than $1 million.

Mr Hockey was awarded damages of $200,000 against Fairfax for a defamatory outline and two tweets pertaining to a story about political fundraising and access to the Treasurer, but Justice White found that the story itself was not defamatory.

The articles were published on May 5 last year under the headline Treasurer for Sale.


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