Costs see Potter suit struck out of court

SETBACK: Kevin Foley with a copy of Willy The Wizard, which Mr Foley claims is the basis of one of JK Rowling's books. Picture: Addison Hamilton
SETBACK: Kevin Foley with a copy of Willy The Wizard, which Mr Foley claims is the basis of one of JK Rowling's books. Picture: Addison Hamilton

IT WILL take a miracle, or perhaps a bit of magic, for Wagga solicitor Kevin Foley to pursue litigation against Harry Potter author JK Rowling after his bankrupt client failed to come up with $1.4 million for security to cover costs.The English Court of Appeal struck out the case in London late last week when the estate of Adrian Jacobs did not lodge the money required to help cover the respondents' court costs should the plaintiff lose the case.Mr Foley is part of a legal team representing the estate of the late Adrian Jacobs, which is suing JK Rowling and her publishing company Bloomsbury for damages for plagiarism.No amount was specified, but Mr Foley described the claim as large.The estate claims Rowling's 2000 book Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire substantially copied a book written by Jacobs 13 years earlier called The Adventures of Willy the Wizard - No 1 Livid Land.An upset Mr Foley yesterday said the Jacobs' legal team had submitted to the court some time ago that it would be extremely difficult for a bankrupt estate to raise $1.4 million (about $A3 million) to continue the case. Mr Foley said the payment had been ordered by the court at the request of Rowling's legal team."Our submission to the court was that an amount like this would stifle the case, and that is exactly what it did," Mr Foley said. "It's a very upsetting situation. We believe if we had been able to get JK Rowling into the witness box we would have won the case."Mr Foley, who has been involved in the case for at least four years, said the Jacobs team was now considering taking its case to the International Court of Justice.