Tuesday, October 18, 2005 Posted: 1154 GMT (1954 HKT)

【LONDON, England (Reuters) -- David and Victoria Beckham are due to

appear in court in December to deny that they "cynically and

hypocritically" presented a false image of a happy marriage in order to

protect their commercial interests.】

The England soccer captain and his pop star wife are suing British

tabloid News of the World for an article in September 2004, called

"Posh & Becks on Rocks," and will have to show the court their marriage

is as strong as they say it is.

What promises to be a high-profile celebrity trial at London's High

Court is expected to begin on December 5 and last for about two weeks.

Most libel cases in Britain are decided by a jury.

The newspaper's lawyer, Richard Spearman, has asked the judge presiding

over the case to demand the Beckhams hand over documents including

telephone records and even unscreened television footage that would be

"crucial" to the defense.

The News of the World is arguing the defense of "justification," in

other words that the article, based on an account by the Beckhams'

former nanny Abbie Gibson, was true.

The Beckhams have already obtained a court order banning the nanny

from revealing more secrets.

The judge has reserved his decision over what should or should not be

disclosed during the trial and will give it later.

(Copyright 2005 Reuters. All rights reserved.This material may not be

published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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