Mistake by Trump here, mistake

Mrs Trump had notified the British newspaper and other news organisations on August 22 that she would take legal action, Trump’s attorney, Charles Harder, said in an email at the time, calling the reports “outright lying”.

“These defendants made several statements about Mrs. Trump that are 100% false and tremendously damaging to her personal and professional reputation,” he said in a statement on Thursday. The lawsuit was filed in state circuit court in Montgomery County, Maryland.

The lawsuit alleges that the Maryland blogger, Webster Griffin Tarpley, published “false and defamatory statements” about Mrs Trump, including that the former model had suffered from “a full-blown nervous breakdown”.

Suggesting that she was well, suggesting what they suggested, is damaging to the reputation of the wife of a Presidential candidate, yes, I think we would probably say that it was.

The mistake is filing the case in the US. She probably is a public figure in which case – umm, what is it, malice? something like that – has to be proven, not just defamation.

The piece was also published in England, so the English laws on libel apply. Should sue in England instead.

Libel jurisdiction depends upon where something is read.

15 thoughts on “Mistake by Trump here, mistake”

  1. @So Much for Subtlety

    Retracting only gets them so far off the hook. The terms of the retraction (see Guido) suggest that the Mail don’t want to fight for fear of making it worse. Couldn’t happen a nicer bunch.

  2. England & Wales did reform libel law a few years ago to try and deal with the issue of libel tourism – Scotland has yet to follow suit so he’d have had a better chance there.

    A moot point now however since the Daily Wail has backed down.

  3. While it’s harder to prove in the US, the settlement is also likely to be much larger there. Libel awards in England got a lot smaller in the 1990s as judges took over determining them from juries.

    The libel tourism reforms wouldn’t affect this – they’re aimed at non-UK publishers who are also readable in the UK. There’s no reasonable argument that the Daily Mail isn’t a UK publication.

    (the point being that you can’t sue, say, the Washington Post, in an English court just because English people can read it online, but you could sue the New York Times if it was in the international edition)

  4. Who says she is trying to win the court case? The Trumps can now say that they don’t pimp themselves out to the highest bidder through an upscale operation in New York.

    Can the Clintons say the same thing.

  5. @Richard Gadsden

    “There’s no reasonable argument that the Daily Mail isn’t a UK publication.”

    No – it has dedicated American content too:


    Hosted on the co.uk servers, for sure, but to all intents and purposes this is for American consumption and will, I’m sure, be adjudged an American publication.

    Brown trousers for the DM, and not before time.

  6. Would everyone who says that a point is “moot” please tell us whether they mean “moot” in the British or American sense? Thank you for your co-operation.

  7. I rarely read the Mail, and never buy it, but (as one of the most profitable UK news organisations) it had a good reputation for fact-checking backed up by formidable lawyers. So what went wrong here?

  8. If apologising and retracting was enough to get you off libel our press would be a complete sewer of shit-slinging. All the Mail has done is reduce, possibly, the amount they have to cough up.

    Though they might get a Democrat judge. What are the odds?

  9. She has hired the lawyer who shoved a Christmas Tree sideways up Gawker’s arse.

    A few sleepless nights at the Mail Schloss coming up, methinks.

  10. The only thing is – most of the world had paid no attention to this story up till now.

    When it came on the news headlines this morning, the general consensus in our office was that the mail’s story was probably true, but they’d decided they couldn’t afford to risk losing it.

    Granted, they may well end up extracting a load of cash from the mail, but at the expense of reminding the world of the allegations. (See also the nation’s favourite poof and his injunctions).

  11. So Much For Subtlety

    theProle – “When it came on the news headlines this morning, the general consensus in our office was that the mail’s story was probably true, but they’d decided they couldn’t afford to risk losing it.”

    At this stage what does it matter? The female voters of America live in fear of being replaced by a younger hotter woman from Eastern Europe and so they would never have voted for Trump anyway. The male voters with balls will simply be reminded of how hot she is.

    The female voters plus all the sackless males will probably give the election to Hilary no matter what happens.

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