The author brought legal action against Chris Gossage, a partner at Russells Solicitors, and his friend Judith Callegari for revealing her pseudonym. Rowling was revealed as the writer of The Cuckoo’s Calling, published under the pen name Robert Galbraith, in a Sunday Times article.
Her solicitor said that Russells had contacted Rowling’s agent after the story was published, revealing it was Gossage who had divulged the confidential information to Callegari, who then revealed the information in a twitter exchange with a journalist.
The court heard Rowling had been “left dismayed and distressed by such a fundamental betrayal of trust”. Gossage, Callegari and Russells apologised and the firm agreed to pay the author’s legal cost. It also agreed to make a payment by way of damages to The Soldiers’ Charity, formerly known as the Army Benevolent Fund.
Rowling explained she was donating the money “partly as thank you to the army people,” who helped her with research, but also because “writing a hero who is a veteran has given me an even greater appreciation and understanding of exactly how much this charity does for ex-servicemen and their families.”
The Cuckoo’s Calling, about a war veteran turned private investigator named Cormoran Strike, sold 1500 copies before it was revealed that Rowling is the author. The Harry Potter creator said she would be donating all the royalties for the book to The Soldiers’ Charity.
"Her tremendous show of support for The Soldiers’ Charity will help remind people of the money sacrifices made by our soldiers, long after any news of Afghanistan has left the front page”, Major General Martin Rutledge chief executive of ABF The Soldiers’ Charity said.