London Underground commuter wins £12,000 damages

A cyclist who was grabbed by an employee at a tube station ticket barrier has won nearly £12,000 in compensation.

Leib Spektor, 58, was the victim of "inappropriate force" when he passed through Canada Water Tube station, a High Court judge ruled on Friday.

But the judge rejected Mr Spektor's original claim for £1m damages.

He also rejected claims of thousands of pounds for a trip to Thailand, ready meals and loss of earnings.

'Excessive and exaggerated'

The cyclist sued London Underground (LU) after he claimed he was left "significantly disabled" following the February 2006 incident.

Mr Spektor was passing through barriers at Canada Water Tube station with his bike when a worker challenged him about the route he had taken.

When he failed to reply the LU worker forced him back and bent him over the barriers.

Mr Spektor, of Lewisham, south-east London, originally claimed £1m damages. The company offered him £18,000.

Deputy Judge Satinder Hunjan had previously ruled LU should compensate Mr Spektor for neck and back injuries and for an anxiety disorder which stopped him going out in the dark.

But on Friday the High Court judge decided his claims were "excessive and exaggerated" and awarded Mr Spektor £11,925.

The judge said Mr Spektor had a "significant" medical history and he had taken that into account when assessing compensation.

Thai massage

He suffered from disabling osteoarthritis and had not worked for 10 years, the judge said.

The judge rejected other claims including a "substantial amount" for a two-month trip to Thailand in January 2007 for "extensive massage" and £41,917 for ready meals.

He said Mr Spektor's GP suggested Thailand because it would be a good idea for him to go to a warm climate.

He added: "It involves, after injury of minor trauma, him travelling half the way around the world, incurring flight and hotel expenses and the cost of massage which, incidentally, is not supported by any direct medical evidence."

The judge also dismissed a "highly speculative" claim for £300,000 which allegedly represented a lost chance to develop game software for the flight industry.

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