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Council faces huge libel bill

ESSEX County Council is facing a six-figure libel bill because of its "crude and insensitive" treatment of a science and technology teacher. High Court judge Mr Justice Eady said a "seriously defamatory letter about Peter Cunningham, 66, sent to third parties, had caused acute distress. He ordered the council to pay pound;9,500 damages and most of Mr Cunningham's estimated pound;200,000 legal costs.

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