Rory McIlroy’s lawyer, Michael Cush, told the High Court of Dublin on Tuesday that it was “inherently implausible” that McIlroy wiped his and his associates’ cell phones, as Horizon Sports Management alleged on Monday.
Cush said there was “not a shred of evidence” to support Horizon’s assertion that McIlroy erased information on the phones that would have been pertinent to the long-running and acrimonious case between the world No. 1 and his former agency.
McIlroy and Horizon are in discovery and headed toward a full hearing to clear up their messy break-up last year, when McIlroy left Horizon and started his own management company, Rory McIlroy Inc. McIlroy claims he was too young, 22, and without legal advice when he first entered into the representation agreement with Horizon; Horizon denies this claim and has counter-sued for approximately $3 million—money it claims McIlroy earned when he was still legally bound to the Dublin-based agency.
According to a report in today’s Independent, Cush strongly denied the validity of Horizon’s cell phone-wipe claim:
McIlroy has said he changes phones every so often, but for the usual reasons, among them the desire to keep up with changing technology. What exactly Horizon was hoping to find in its request for a “forensic” inspection of the cell phones was unclear.
Mr. Cush said Horizon's application to court for the right to forensically inspect the phones held by Mr. McIlroy over a three-year period had effectively been dealt with during another hearing earlier this year seeking disclosure of documents.
This latest application was "dressed up" as seeking inspection of phones when it was in fact an application for further and better discovery of documents previously dealt with by Mr. Justice Peter Kelly in July, counsel said.
The case is ongoing.