Saturday, September 13, 2008

Vitamin Pill Magnate Matthias Rath Loses Case

Rath lost the libel suit he filed against UK newspaper The Guardian and Ben Goldacre.
"It’s just been publicly announced that the vitamin pill magnate Matthias Rath has pulled out of his gruelling legal case against me and the Guardian. He bought full page adverts denouncing Aids drugs while promoting his vitamin pills in South Africa, a country where hundreds of thousands die every year from Aids under an HIV denialist president and the population is ripe for miracle cures. I said his actions were highly worrying, in no uncertain terms. I believe I was right to do so.

This libel case has drawn on for over a year, with the writ hanging both in my toilet, and over my head. Although fighting it has been fascinating, and in many respects a great pleasure, it has also taken a phenomenal amount of my time, entirely unpaid, to deal with it. For the duration of the case I have also been silenced on the serious issues that Rath’s activities raise, the chapter on his work was pulled from my book, and I have been unable to comment on his further movements around the world.

This will now change, and I hope that other newspapers will have the sense to step outside of commercial allegiances and write about his activities, despite this single incident being one newspaper’s tussle. I genuinely believe that the madness of the South African government’s approach to Aids is one of the most important stories of our time."

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