A senior Tory peer is preparing to sue the South Yorkshire Occult Society Journal, claiming that the publication is responsible for him having been wrongly accused of vampirism. “This has been a highly traumatic experience for our client,” Harold Wang, of Wang, Koch and Schlong, the politician’s solicitors, told The Sleaze earlier this week. “How would you feel if you suddenly found your name all over Twitter, being referred to as a ‘blood-sucking Tory bastard’ or a ‘bloated leech’?” Even worse, former party treasurer Lord Nevis has claimed to have been attacked in the street as the result of the article in the Journal. “Having crucifixes and cloves of garlic thrust in your face every time you go out in public is extremely upsetting for our client,” Wang says. “Not only that, but his local vicar attempted to shoot him with a silver bullet and a group of theological students broke into his house last week armed with sharpened stakes. Luckily he was out. Naturally, we will be seeking substantial damages from the Occult Society.”

The South Yorkshire Occult Society have been quick to respond, pointing out that the offending article in their journal didn’t actually name Lord Nevis as a vampire. “It was a serious investigation into the outbreaks of vampirism which plagued the UK during the 1970s and how it had been covered up by the establishment,” explains the Journal’s editor, Henry Jiblett. “Over a hundred people – mainly young women – reported having their blood sucked by mysterious men in 1974 alone, yet there were nobody was staked or decapitated as a consequence! What does that tell you? That the vampires occupied positions of privilege – everybody knows that they always have titles like count or baron and live in big houses and castles – and were being protected at the highest levels of government.” Whilst the article didn’t name any names, it did quote several supposed victims of the infamous ‘Sheffield Vampire Ring’, in which a number of inmates at a boarding school for female young offenders were allegedly molested by a group of wealthy vampires over a period of several years during the early 1970s, all of whom described the vampires as being ‘wealthy men of power’, obviously connected to the establishment. One of the alleged victims, recently identified in the press as fifty-two year old Vera Knockstopp, claimed that it was Lord Nevis who had drunk her blood. “She told us that he would regularly visit the reform school, arriving in a black Daimler hearse, and take her to local graveyards, where she would be subjected to terrifying ordeals,” says Jiblett. “The evil undead pervert wasn’t satisfied with just biting her neck – he sank his teeth in all over: breasts, buttocks, the bloody lot!” Knockstopp – who was only fourteen at the time – also alleged that Nevis had wined and dined her at Harrogate Conservative Club and had once whisked her away for a weekend of passion and blood-letting at a luxurious bed and Breakfast in Scarborough.

“Obviously, for legal reasons, we didn’t name him, or the other suspects, instead just referring to him as being a titled member of the Conservative Party. Quite how anybody could identify Lord Nevis from such a vague description is beyond me,” says the editor. “They could have been describing any one of a hundred Tory bastards!” However Nevis’ lawyers argue that as a consequence of the article, large numbers of readers logged onto the internet and identified their client via web searches. “Lord Nevis’ name is the top result for the search phrase ‘top tory bloodsucker’, and several variations,” claims Harold Wang. “It’s quite clear that they would never have made such a search, let alone even used the internet, if they hadn’t read that article – the causality is clear!” Other legal experts are less sure about the validity of Wang’s arguments, pointing out that the search term which allegedly identified Nevis – whose eponymous company became notorious during the 1980s for buying up ailing UK firms in order to strip their assets and raid their pension funds – need not specifically refer to vampirism. “Moreover, his connection to these terms on search engines would pre-date the article, otherwise they wouldn’t have thrown up his name,” muses top civil liberties lawyer Rob Hernia. “Not only that, but surely only about three people actually read this journal? They could hardly be responsible for this alleged online backlash against Lord Nevis, could they?”

Jiblett also points out that the rumours linking Lord Nevis to the vampire scandal had been circulating on the web for many years prior to the publication of his article. “Why has he waited so long to take legal action over them, and why has he chosen the South Yorkshire Occult Society Journal to sue when we didn’t actually name him?” he demands. “The fact is that he knows that we’re on to him and he’s afraid of the mobs of righteous vampire hunters our article has unleashed upon him! Clearly, he’s out to discredit us in order to protect himself!” The society’s position has been undermined in the past few days, following Knockstopp’s admission to rival publication the Cleethorpes Paranormal Gazette that she had misidentified Lord Nevis in earlier interviews. “Having now seen a photograph of Lord Nevis, I realise that it wasn’t him who ravaged me and initiated me into vampirism,” the former drug addict and mother of three, who has recently been given a suspended sentence for biting two club bouncers, said in an interview. “I was confused as I only ever saw my assailant at night and often in the form of a bat.” Harold Wang has seized upon this statement as the definitive proof that his client has been libelled. “My client has maintained all along that he had never been to Sheffield, had never owned a Daimler hearse and had never turned into a bat,” he declares triumphantly. “This is the final proof that he is the victim of the confused erotic fantasies of a disturbed teenager!”

Nonetheless, despite Knockstopper’s retraction, Jiblett and the Occult Society have vowed to continue to fight Nevis’ legal action. “They’ve obviously got to her,” he says, noting that her legal bills in her recent court case had been paid by a mystery benefactor. “The fact is that everyone knows that he’s a vampire All the clues are there: he’s a bloody Lord, he treats the lower classes like peasants and why else would he have bought a castle in Transylvania, where he now spends most of his time? Not only that, but has anyone ever noticed his remarkable resemblance to his supposedly dead father and grandfather? They’re all the same bloody person – he’s obviously hundreds of years old!” Lord Nevis’ solicitors, meanwhile, have announced that are also preparing to sue digital channel Firmament TV, after a presenter on its popular paranormal series High Spirits confronted the Prime Minister with a list of alleged witches, warlocks and vampires culled from the web, during an interview. “Admittedly, it perhaps wasn’t an interview as such – the presenter gate crashed a photo opportunity with the Women’s Institute waving a piece of paper and shouting ‘You know some of these evil creatures Mr Cameron, some of them are members of your party’, before being removed by security, but it was seen on TV by the programme’s audience. Which, I’m assured, is sometimes measured in three figures,” Wang opines. “Once again, anyone watching it would have been encouraged to make an internet search which might turn up our client’s name!”