Defamation: Mail agrees to pay Melania Trump damages and costs

The publishers of the Daily Mail and MailOnline have agreed to pay US first lady Melania Trump damages and costs to settle her lawsuits against them.

zoom-in has reported in previous editions on Mrs Trump’s libel actions in both the US and UK. She sued over articles that reported allegations about Mrs Trump’s past when she worked as model, which included allegations that her modelling agency had provided escort services. The Mail had published a retraction but Mrs Trump brought actions against them in both London and in the US; as well as an action against a blogger, Webster Tarpley, which was settled earlier this year.

The Daily Mail and MailOnline have now settled the claims paying a sum in damages and legal costs which has not been disclosed, but has been reported to be around $3 million. Mrs Trump had sought $150 million in her US claim. An apology has also been published and a statement was read before the High Court in London. In it Mrs Trump’s lawyers outlined her claim and said: ‘The suggestion that such allegations even merit investigation is deeply offensive and has caused a great deal of upset and distress to the claimant.’

A lawyer on behalf of the Mail told the Judge that it acknowledged that the claims were untrue, retracted and withdrew them, and that it was before the court ‘publicly to set the record straight, and to apologise to the claimant for any distress and embarrassment that the articles may have caused her.’