Feeds

Google defamed Australian man with links to gangster

Search results connected everyday punter with nasty drug dealer

The essential guide to IT transformation

Antonios 'Tony' Sajih Mokbel is not, by many accounts including the Australian TV series Underbelly, a very nice chap.

The show details how Mokbel was involved in a violent gang war in the Australian State of Victoria, which recently sent him down for 22 years and confiscated $AUD18million of assets said to have been generated by drug dealing.

In short, he's not the kind of fellow one would want to be associated with.

Melbourne man Michael Trkulja certainly didn't want to be associated with Mokbel, not least because he was shot by a masked gunman in 2004 for reasons that remain murky to this day.

But Google seemed to want to associate Trkulja with Mokbel, as in 2009 a search on Trkulja's name produced pictures of Mokbel and links to articles about the villain.

Trkulja asked Google to do something about it, the Chocolate Factory either declined to do so or acted slowly because Trkulja may not have filled in the right forms, and the matter wound up in court where this week a jury agreed with Trkulja's defamation claim.

Google has clammed up about the case, which went against it because the jury felt it had not done enough to meet Trkulja's requests and could therefore be responsible for the links in its index.

Trkulja is understandably chuffed at having won, describing a battle against Google as exhausting and difficult.

Yahoo! has already coughed up $AUD225,000 after a similar case went Trkulja's way. Just what Google will be forced to fork out, or whether it will appeal, is yet to be decided. The case's ramifications for search engines around the world will also be watched with interest. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
GCHQ protesters stick it to British spooks ... by drinking urine
Activists told NOT to snap pics of staff at the concrete doughnut
Britain's housing crisis: What are we going to do about it?
Rent control: Better than bombs at destroying housing
What do you mean, I have to POST a PHYSICAL CHEQUE to get my gun licence?
Stop bitching about firearms fees - we need computerisation
Top beak: UK privacy law may be reconsidered because of social media
Rise of Twitter etc creates 'enormous challenges'
Redmond resists order to hand over overseas email
Court wanted peek as related to US investigation
Ex US cybersecurity czar guilty in child sex abuse website case
Health and Human Services IT security chief headed online to share vile images
NZ Justice Minister scalped as hacker leaks emails
Grab your popcorn: Subterfuge and slur disrupts election run up
prev story

Whitepapers

Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.