Man accused of lying in Tulisa case

Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Tulisa Contostavlos and Gareth Varey deny the charges against them Tulisa Contostavlos and Gareth Varey deny the charges against them

A man who accused singer and former X-Factor judge Tulisa Contostavlos of assaulting him at a music festival has been accused in court of lying to police.

Celebrity blogger Savvas Morgan claims the N-Dubz star hit him during an altercation a the V-Festival in Essex in August last year.

He was confronted by her lawyer over a "lost" photograph showing his injuries, which Mr Morgan alleged earlier in the trial had been taken after the attack.

He was called back to the trial at Chelmsford Magistrates Court by district judge Angus Hamilton after witness Jonathan Shalit made a statement claiming that Royston Gooden Legore, who Mr Morgan says took the picture, told him in a phone call that it never existed.

Mr Morgan told the court today that a picture showing the swollen eye he claims he was given by Tulisa had existed, but had been deleted by Legore, who told him he feared for his future in the music industry if he went against the 25-year-old star.

Her barrister, Jeremy Dein QC, asked Mr Morgan: "You have misled police throughout regarding the existence of a photo showing injuries to you, haven't you? That is why Mr Legore has not come forward, because there never was a photograph?"

Mr Morgan denied the claim, replying: "I don't need to mislead the police about a picture. If there was no photo, I would have said.

"I was honest from the start and I will keep being honest. If you don't think there was a photo then that's the end of it."

Tulisa is standing trial accused of assault alongside her assistant Gareth Varey, 28, who is accused of threatening behaviour. The pair deny the charges against them.

Tulisa had previously told the court that Mr Morgan conducted a "vendetta" against her since an incident in which she asked security to remove him from a VIP area at the Whisky Mist nightclub in London's Mayfair.

She also outlined her suspicions that Mr Morgan was involved in the release of a sex tape of her online. But she claimed she had no grudge against him, saying: "He was one of many."

In his closing speech today, prosecutor Matthew McNiff said Tulisa was a "good actress" and several witnesses had testified against her.

Tulisa could be seen gently shaking her head at one point during Mr McNiff's speech.

The trial sat for three days in June before being adjourned to today to allow more witnesses to be heard

Mr Dein said Mr Morgan was not a person to be believed, saying there had been a "sinister" undercurrent about the way he acted, including blogging about "building a case" against Tulisa.

He suggested that Mr Morgan made the claim after being publicly "embarrassed" by the star, potentially damaging his professional reputation.

Mr Dein said: "There is no indication from anyone anywhere that she is a lady disposed to violence or temper.

" The proposition that this can be dismissed on the basis that she is a good actress is not only offensive but contrary to the evidence the court has heard."

Mr Dein also raised 335 abusive comments from readers about Tulisa under Mr Morgan's blog posts. Along with a copy of Tulisa's well-publicised sex tape, they were removed from the website only after the singer obtained a court order, the trial heard.

Mr Dein also questioned the reliability of prosecution witnesses, several of whom were friends of Mr Morgan.

Tulisa will face a fifth day in court and a wait of three weeks to find out her fate after the judge adjourned the hearing after a day lengthened by extensive legal argument.

He will hand down his verdict at Stratford Magistrates' Court in east London on July 25.

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