Been busy but I have two very encouraging things to report!
First, I took Davenport Lyons to Small Claims Court and WON! They didn't send anyone, only some letters to the court. I won Â£250 from them for wasted time leading to lost earnings (charged at my hourly rate of Â£45+VAT), letters, stamps, envelopes, phone calls and interest. It even includes the hour I spent in court and petrol costs to drive there and back, plus parking. Oh, and Â£30 court costs as well.
My argument was simple: they had no intention of ever taking me to court, as evidenced by the fact that they backed down very quickly once I started asking for more details. As such they caused me financial loss (having to waste time checking computers and networks used for business, writing letters etc), which I have now recovered.
They have not paid up yet, but if I don't get a cheque come January I will be contacting a debt recovery agency. Part of me hopes they don't pay, just so the bailiffs get sent in
The other positive development is that it looks like there is a good case to be made with the Information Commissioner, as pointed out in this article:
Basically, the European Directive on personal data is to be interpreted as not requiring it's disclosure for purely civil matters
, such as copyright infringement. As such, VM should not disclose the information, and the court was wrong to order it to be disclosed. Furthermore, it seems that Davenport Lyons must also not retain that data. I have already written to all involved parties to ask for clarification, and in DL's case to delete all data regarding myself which is stored electronically.