JK Rowling wins damages from law firm over pseudonym leak

JK Rowling wins damages from law firm over pseudonym leak

JK Rowling, celebrated British author of the popular Harry Potter series, today accepted a "substantial" donation to charity as damages from a law firm that leaked her name as the true author of a crime novel.

The Harry Potter author was revealed as writing under the false identity of male writer 'Robert Galbraith' in penning crime novel 'The Cuckoo's Calling'.

48-year-old Rowling, a multi-millionaire, won "substantial" damages from the Russells law firm to be paid to The Soldiers' Charity.

The amount of the damages in the form of charity was not specified.

A statement issued on the author's behalf this morning said that all global net royalties which would otherwise have been paid to her from book sales of The Cuckoo's Calling would be donated to The Soldiers' Charity for a period of three years, dating from July 14, the day that Galbraith's identity was made known.

"This donation is being made to The Soldiers' Charity partly as a thank you to the Army people who helped me with research, but also because writing a hero who is a veteran has given me an even greater appreciation and understanding of exactly how much this charity does for ex-servicemen and their families, and how much that support is needed," she was quoted by The Times as saying.

She had found out that the leak came from law firm Russells, whom she had assumed she "could expect total confidentiality from".

"I feel very angry that my trust turned out to be misplaced. To say that I am disappointed is an understatement," she had said in a statement.

Russells Solicitors had apologised "unreservedly" for the leak.

The writer then brought a legal action case against Chris Gossage, a partner at Russells Solicitors, and his friend, Judith Callegari.

Rowling's solicitor told Justice Tugendhat that Russells had contacted the writer's agent after the story was published, revealing it was Gossage who had divulged the confidential information to Callegari.

Callegari then revealed the information in the course of a Twitter exchange with a journalist.

The court heard Rowling had been "left dismayed and distressed by such a fundamental betrayal of trust".

The Cuckoo's Calling, about a war veteran turned private investigator called Cormoran Strike, had sold 1,500 copies before it was revealed that Rowling was its author.

Within hours, the novel rose more than 5,000 places to top Amazon's sales list.

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