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Rebekah Vardy trial – live: Wayne Rooney to take to the stand with Jamie Vardy in court for first time



Rebekah Vardy moved to tears in witness box during second day of evidence

Paul Stretford, an agent to the Rooney family, has denied arranging staged paparazzi photos of Coleen to be taken.

In his witness statement, Mr Stretford said: “I understand that Rebekah Vardy has suggested in her correspondence with Simon Boyle, a journalist at The Sun, that I have an ‘army of f****** minions’ working for me and for Coleen.

“This is untrue. “I further understand that Caroline Watt and Rebekah Vardy have alleged that I arrange for staged paparazzi shots of Coleen to be taken.

“Again, this is untrue.”

Today marks day six of Ms Vardy’s libel trial against Coleen Rooney, the wife of the former England international and Derby County manager.

Ms Vardy, 39, is suing Ms Rooney, 35, for defamation after Ms Rooney publicly accused the latter of being the source of stories about her that were leaked to The Sun newspaper.

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Court is taking a short break – and then Wayne Rooney will be in the witness box

Holly Bancroft17 May 2022 11:33

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Rooney agent denies arranging staged paparazzi photos of Coleen

Paul Stretford has denied arranging staged paparazzi photos of Coleen Rooney to be taken.

In his witness statement, Mr Stretford said: “I understand that Rebekah Vardy has suggested in her correspondence with Simon Boyle, a journalist at The Sun, that I have an ‘army of f****** minions’ working for me and for Coleen.

“I further understand that Caroline Watt and Rebekah Vardy have alleged that I arrange for staged paparazzi shots of Coleen to be taken.

Mr Stretford also said in his witness statement that he “never got the impression that (Mrs Rooney) is particularly bothered about fame or even putting herself out there”.

Matt Mathers17 May 2022 11:31

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Rooney advisor: I had no idea Coleen was going to out Rebekah

In a witness statement submitted to the trial, Paul Stretford said he only learned about Ms Rooney’s online sleuthing when she made her Instagram post on 9 October 2019.

He said he did not know “anything about the actual stories she had been uploading to her Instagram account. I was not consulted prior to Coleen’s post being drafted or uploaded either.”

Mr Stretford added: “Upon learning about Coleen’s post, I called Wayne to ask what was going on. I remember being annoyed that Coleen had expressly mentioned The Sun in her post because I thought it might lead to further difficulties with The Sun.

“Wayne said that Coleen was and had been really upset but I do not believe he had any more knowledge about what was going on than I did.

“It was at this stage that I became fully aware of the turmoil and upset that Coleen had been experiencing and the extent she had gone through to find the person responsible.”

Matt Mathers17 May 2022 11:30

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Coleen Rooney is ‘not bothered about fame’, Mr Stretford says

Wayne Rooney’s agent Paul Stretford has denied arranging staged paparazzi photos of Coleen Rooney to be taken.

In his witness statement, Mr Stretford said: “I understand that Rebekah Vardy has suggested in her correspondence with Simon Boyle, a journalist at The Sun, that I have an ‘army of f****** minions’ working for me and for Coleen.

“I further understand that Caroline Watt and Rebekah Vardy have alleged that I arrange for staged paparazzi shots of Coleen to be taken.
“Again, this is untrue.”

Holly Bancroft17 May 2022 11:22

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Vardy’s agent ‘called Wayne Rooney’s cousin a chav in WhatsApp exchange’

Wayne Rooney’s cousin Claire says she was referred to as “chavvy” in a WhatsApp message exchange between Rebekah Vardy and her agent.

In a witness statement submitted to the Wagatha Christie trial at the Royal Courts of Justice in London, Claire Rooney said she was provided with an extract of messages between Ms Vardy and her agent, Caroline Watt.

The pair had been discussing who might be leaking stories about Mr Rooney’s wife Coleen to The Sun Newspaper.

“I can see that Caroline Watt suggests ‘It’s probably someone like Wayne’s chavvy sister'”, Claire Rooney wrote in her statement.

“Wayne doesn’t have a sister and so I assume that Caroline Watt is referring to me as Wayne’s cousin and because I still have the Rooney surname. I have never met Caroline Watt in my life, nor have I ever spoken to her.”

She added: “I am not aware that Coleen has either. I can confirm that I have never leaked information about Coleen or Wayne (or anyone else for that matter) to the press.”

Matt Mathers17 May 2022 11:15

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Wayne Rooney told agent that Coleen was ‘extremely upset’ about leaks

Wayne Rooney told his agent that Coleen was “extremely upset” about her private information was being leaked to The Sun in 2017, the court heard.

Mr Paul Stretford, Mr Rooney’s agent, said that he became aware of the leaks in 2017 when “I had a conversation with Mr Rooney.”

He said Mr Rooney “mentioned that Coleen was extremely upset about leaks regarding private information”. He added: “She was in a place where she wasn’t sure who to trust and was extremely upset about that information being leaked.”

Mr Stretford said that the next time he heard about it was when Ms Rooney did her ‘reveal post’ in 2019.

Holly Bancroft17 May 2022 10:57

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The defence calls Mr Paul Stretford, Wayne Rooney’s agent

Holly Bancroft17 May 2022 10:43

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Claire Rooney is being quizzed about photos she took when on a getaway with Coleen Rooney at Soho Farmhouse.

Ms Vardy’s lawyer Mr Tomlinson asked Ms Rooney if she thought any pictures she posted on Instagram of their trip could have found their way into the press.

“I don’t think so no,” she said.

“I don’t think any of the pictures were from my phone, no.”

Holly Bancroft17 May 2022 10:42

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Claire Rooney, Wayne’s cousin, has said that she didn’t feel a need to ask Coleen Rooney about her infamous ‘Wagatha Christie’ post.

Speaking from the witness stand, Claire Rooney said: “I just seen the post, I didn’t feel a need to ask her any more questions.” She said that she had read about Coleen Rooney’s concerns about leaks to The Sun in a previous post.

“You just weren’t interested?”, Ms Vardy’s lawyer Mr Hugh Tomlinson QC quizzed Ms Rooney.

Ms Rooney told the court that she had read a private post by Coleen Rooney about her leak suspicions in 2017. She said she didn’t talk to Coleen about the situation then either.

“Did you ever discuss this prior to, what’s been called, the reveal post in 2019, which made big news?” Mr Tomlinson asked.

“No I never did,” Ms Rooney insisted.

Holly Bancroft17 May 2022 10:37

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The defence calls Wayne Rooney’s cousin Claire Rooney

Holly Bancroft17 May 2022 10:23



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