Wagatha Christie trial day three: The biggest developments as Rebekah Vardy cries over 'sting operation' grilling

·TV Reporter, Yahoo Entertainment UK
·7 min read
Rebekah Vardy, Coleen Rooney and Wayne Rooney arrive at the High Court on day three of the Wagatha Christie trial. (PA)
Rebekah Vardy, Coleen Rooney and Wayne Rooney arrive at the High Court on day three of the Wagatha Christie trial. (PA)

It's day three of the Wagatha Christie trial and Rebekah Vardy is on her final day of giving evidence, with Coleen Rooney expected to take the stand on Friday.

On Thursday, Rooney's barrister David Sherborne is cross-examining Vardy, grilling her on a range of topics including a famous paparazzi photo of the Wags – 'wives and girlfriends' of England footballers – on a night out at the 2018 World Cup, something that Vardy denies orchestrating.

Here are the day's biggest developments in the trial at the High Court.

Rebekah Vardy cries over grilling about Instagram 'sting operation'

Rebekah Vardy (C), wife of England and Leicester City footballer Jamie Vardy, leaves from the High Court in central London at the end of the third day of the
Rebekah Vardy has had a tough day in court. (Getty Images)

Vardy began to cry in the witness box on Thursday afternoon during her cross-examination over whether she had seen a so-called “flooded basement” post – one of the Instagram stories Rooney claims were only seen by Vardy’s account during her “sting operation”.

Vardy had told the court earlier that she did not recall seeing the Instagram post, but Sherborne took her to a letter from her solicitors which said she did remember seeing it.

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The barrister said: “Your solicitors admit, because you told them, that you had seen the flooded basement post but you just told us some two and a half years after the event that you didn’t recall it.”

“There was a lot of abuse during that time,” Vardy replied before she started to cry in the witness box.

Sherborne suggested a short break, and as the judge left the room, a tearful Vardy put her head in her hands on the desk.

Rebekah Vardy claims she wasn't the only Instagram account watching Coleen Rooney's fake posts

Coleen Rooney, wife of former England footballer Wayne Rooney, arrives at the Royal Courts of Justice on the third day of the high-profile trial against Coleen Rooney who is being sued for libel by Rebekah Vardy over public accusations of leaking private stories to the press in London, United Kingdom on May 12, 2022. (Photo by Wiktor Szymanowicz/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
Coleen Rooney set up a 'sting operation' to try to catch out who was leaking stories about her to the press. (Getty Images)

Rooney's "sting operation" involved posting fake Instagram updates where she had limited the number of people able to see them to just Vardy's account, which is how she came to allege that Vardy had been selling stories about her.

But as Sherborne turned to Rooney’s fake post about having a flooded basement following a storm in October 2019 – the day before her “Wagatha Christie” post at the centre of the libel case - he said: “This is the ‘flooded basement’ post, and we can see in the … corner it was only seen by you, wasn’t it?”

Vardy said: “On the face of it, that is what it says.”

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Sherborne said: “You know, don’t you, that she has limited her followers to just one account, no-one else would have seen it?” to which she replied: “The disclosure suggests otherwise.”

Vardy also considered using the anniversary of Rooney’s sister’s death to approach her after discovering she had been blocked on Instagram, the court heard.

Rebekah Vardy, wife of England and Leicester City footballer Jamie Vardy, arrives at the High Court in central London on the third day of the
Rebekah Vardy has rejected claims she was selling stories about Coleen Rooney. (Getty Images)

Sherborne questioned her over the mention of the sister, Rosie, during a conversation between her and agent Caroline Watt after she was cut off on the social media platform.

He said: “You are trying to work out what you should do about the fact that Mrs Rooney has unfollowed you.”

Reading messages from her to Watt, he continued: “‘I never usually message her’ and say here ‘maybe I should say some about Rosie’. So you were going use the anniversary of her deceased sister as the peg to message her?”

Vardy replied that was an interpretation, but claimed that it wasn't the right interpretation.

Rebekah Vardy denies setting up World Cup Wags photo

Rebekah Vardy arrives at the Royal Courts Of Justice, London, as the high-profile libel battle between Rebekah Vardy and Coleen Rooney enters its third day. Picture date: Thursday May 12, 2022.
Rebekah Vardy says she had nothing to do with setting up World Cup photos. (PA)

Sherborne has been quizzing Vardy on how paparazzi photos of a group of Wags including her came to be taken at the 2018 World Cup in Russia in a bid to prove her relationship with tabloid journalists.

He asked Vardy about a series of messages to her agent Caroline Watt where she appeared to be tipping her off about their location and making sure the photos would be exclusive, something Vardy denies.

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Sherborne suggested that a message to Watt which said “I have bought about 10 minutes” referred to the fact Vardy was delaying some of the women from posting a group photograph on social media because a photographer hiding in the bushes had taken a picture of them all and they “didn’t want to lose their exclusive”.

Coleen and Wayne Rooney arrive at the Royal Courts Of Justice, London, as the high-profile libel battle between Rebekah Vardy and Coleen Rooney enters its third day. Picture date: Thursday May 12, 2022.
The Rooneys arrive at court for day three. (PA)

In response, Vardy said: “Well, it reads like that, I don’t recall it like that and if I’m being honest … I had been drinking.”

She also said that in her messages to Watt she was “just trying to get her off my back actually and enjoy my evening, it had been quite a crazy few days.”

There was some confusion as Sherborne asked her to confirm she hadn't orchestrated the photo, with the barrister saying: “The reason you have not got your story straight is because you were lying.”

“No, I wasn’t”, she responded.

Rebekah Vardy denies being source of 'no World Cup sex ban' story

Court artist sketch by Elizabeth Cook of Coleen Rooney's barrister David Sherborne (centre back) questioning Rebekah Vardy (left) as she gives evidence at the Royal Courts Of Justice, London, as Coleen (right) and Wayne (second right) Rooney watch during the high-profile libel battle between herself and Coleen Rooney. Picture date: Thursday May 12, 2022.
A court artist sketch by Elizabeth Cook of Coleen Rooney's barrister David Sherborne (centre back) questioning Rebekah Vardy (left). (PA)

Sherborne also asked Vardy about a story in The Sun claiming England players at the World Cup were not on a sex ban during the tournament.

The barrister said the article, written by Andy Halls who Sherborne had asked about Vardy's connection to, referred to Vardy as having become the “official leader of the Wags” and he suggested she had fed that line to the journalist, to which she responded: “No, that is his, and it is quite an embarrassing statement.”

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Sherborne then referred to an article in The Mail with the headline “Rebekah Vardy gives Coleen Rooney a ‘real run’ as she goes on her seventh holiday this year” and said Vardy then used this as an “excuse” to contact Rooney.

Coleen Rooney arrives with husband Wayne Rooney at Royal Courts of Justice, Strand on May 12, 2022 in London, England. Coleen Rooney, wife of Derby County manager and former England football player Wayne Rooney, and Rebekah Vardy, wife of Leicester City striker Jamie Vardy, are locked in a libel battle dubbed by the media as the
Coleen Rooney is due to begin giving evidence on Friday. (Getty Images)

He said Vardy had joked “when should we book another holiday?” and wished Rooney luck for her move to Washington DC, adding she “must be excited”.

The barrister said: “You are fishing for a little bit of information from her, true or not true?”

Vardy replied: “Of course not, I thought that article was absolutely ridiculous, so I thought I would message her to have a laugh about it, it was crazy.”

She said she had not asked about Rooney’s move to Washington and had simply wished her luck.

Rebekah Vardy denies leaking Coleen Rooney's private Instagram posts

Rebekah Vardy, wife of England and Leicester City footballer Jamie Vardy, arrives at the High Court in central London on the third day of the
Rebekah Vardy claims to know nothing about leaks of Coleen Rooney's private Instagram posts. (Getty Images)

At the core of the trial is Rooney's accusation that Vardy was behind a series of leaks to The Sun about private Instagram posts.

She says she narrowed down a list of suspects behind the leak to just one by gradually removing followers and posting fake updates until all fingers pointed to Vardy — hence the Wagatha Christie nickname.

But Vardy is continuing to deny any involvement, even when asked about Rooney posting that it was “sad to think that someone I have accepted to follow me is betraying, either for money or to keep a relationship with the press”.

Vardy's agent Watt had messaged her: “And it wasn’t someone she trusted, it was me.”

She claimed not to have replied to Watt's message because she was bathing her children and later added she was messaging Watt to discuss Gemma Collins “faceplanting” on Dancing On Ice at the same time.

The trial continues.

Watch: Peter Andre shares his thoughts on Rebekah Vardy 'chipolata' comments

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