60s pop star wins libel settlement

December 2006

Artists, publishers

Sixties pop star Frederick Gladstone, professionally known as Tony Rocco, has won a High Court settlement against author Jake Arnott and Publishers Hodder & Stoughton for libel. Were had performed under the stage name “Tony Rocco” since 1962 when he had had a hit single, Stalemate. Arnott (born 1961) wrote a novel, Johnny Come Home, which featured a character called “Tony Rocco” who was said to be a popular music manager famous for having had a hit single in the 1960s. The fictional Rocco was depicted as a sordid, predatory pederast who lusted after teenage boys. Arnott and the publisher have both apologised for the distress and embarrassment caused to Were and openly acknowledged that Gladstone was and is nothing like the fictional Rocco: The defendants confirmed that the character of Tony Rocco in the novel was not intended to depict Were or refer to him in any way. They undertook not to repeat the allegations and said they would attempt to recall all copies of the novel distributed so far. They also agreed to change the name of the character for all and any future reprints of the novel and to pay Were a substantial sum by way of damages, together with his legal costs.  Frederick Gladstone Were v Hodder & Stoughton and Jake Arnott.
From the most excellent IPKat http://ipkitten.blogspot.com/2006/11/between-rocco-and-hard-place.html

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