Judge dismisses Neilson’s libel suit

By Patsy R. Brumfield/NEMS Daily Journal

OXFORD – Chancellor Robert Elliott on Friday dismissed Oxford FBI agent Hal Neilson’s libel lawsuit against former federal prosecutor Tom Dawson and blogger Alan Lange.
Neilson sued the two, claiming they lied about him in their book, Kings of Tort.
Apparently, neither Neilson or his attorney, Christy R. McCoy, showed up for a hearing last week on a defense motion to dismiss.
Saturday, McCoy told the Daily Journal she will ask Elliott to set aside the dismissal. She said their lack of attendance at the hearing was her “inadvertent” mistake.
“The rules clearly apply for mistakes such as mine and it shouldn’t affect the rights of the client,” she said in an e-mail.
Elliott’s dismissal was granted “without prejudice,” which means Neilson is not barred from re-filing the lawsuit if the original lawsuit can’t get back on track.
Dawson and Lange’s book about the Scruggs judicial bribery scandal claimed that then-U.S. Attorney James Greenlee so distrusted Neilson that he took the Scruggs investigation to the Jackson FBI office.
Neilson said later that their professional relationship collapsed after Neilson complained to the Department of Justice about what he considered improper methods and profiling being done by Greenlee’s office.
patsy.brumfield@journalinc.com