The day after I first accused Andrew Gilligan of using a sock-puppet at the Guardian, a new user named 'Ross281' appeared there, and left their first and only comment:
So when this appeared few days later in an Andrew Gilligan column, I was understandably suspicious:
"She claims it will cost “£300,000 per vehicle, per year” to bring in new single and double-deckers — a figure that would be plausible only if Jonathan Ross were driving and Lakshmi Mittal checking tickets. Even this month's issue of the restrained industry trade journal Buses calls it “naive” and “amazingly high”."
Further scouring of the web by Tom from Boris Watch revealed that similar opinions had been expressed by an "Andrew Ross" at Liberal Conspiracy, the day before Gilligan's article appeared:
Even further searches revealed that 'Andrew Ross' had left comments criticising Ken Livingstone underneath another Andrew Gilligan article.
So who is Andrew Ross and what connection does he have to Ross281 or to Gilligan himself?
Well a seperate search through Liberal Conspiracy's comment logs reveals that whoever left the 'Andrew Ross' comment there, is likely to share the same email address as Ross281 at the Guardian.
They also crucially left a record of their i.p address, which is the number that identifies your location on the internet.
Transferring that number over to Tory Troll I can see that whoever left the Andrew Ross comment, shares an address with whoever left this comment on my last post about Andrew Gilligan:
"Sorry mate, I see no mention of potential cuts in police numbers in that July piece by anyone except you. Breaking a story, and making up a story, aren't the same things at all."
Now I didn't publish this at the time, because I had reason to believe that it may be Andrew Gilligan hiding behind anonymity.
But sure enough as day followed night, a further attempt at this comment was sent the following morning, this time with the commenter identifying themselves as Andrew Gilligan:
"I was fascinated to hear about your claim to have broken the police numbers story. I did have a look at that post of yours for July. Can you point me to the bit where anyone (except you) says anything at all about police numbers"
Now I don't want to keep this amateur sleuth stuff up for too much longer Andrew. The evidence of what has been going on is getting fairly long and tedious.
So come on, I know you read the blog. You've been asked this many times by myself, other bloggers, journalists, and even commenters at the Evening Standard.
So here's your umpteenth chance to answer:
Do you deny leaving comments underneath your own articles and articles about you, whilst pretending to be a third person? Come on Andrew, what do you say?