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Defamation

NEWS
January 28, 2011 | By Jennifer Lin, Inquirer Staff Writer
A federal judge in Philadelphia has dismissed a claim by Carl R. Greene, the ousted executive director of the Philadelphia Housing Authority, that he had been defamed by the PHA chairman, former Mayor John F. Street. Street had described Greene to the press and PHA board as a "serial sexual harasser. " But in a decision issued Jan. 20, U.S. District Judge Ronald L. Buckwalter said Street, as PHA's chairman, was a "high public official" who had immunity. The judge also dismissed Greene's assertion that his employment contract amounted to a property interest, and that he had been denied his due process to defend it. But Buckwalter signaled that Greene might have a claim regarding his due process to protect his reputation.
NEWS
March 24, 2010 | By Robert Moran INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Avoiding a potentially ugly spectacle, Oprah Winfrey yesterday settled a defamation suit filed against her that was scheduled for trial in Philadelphia next week. The billionaire talk-show mogul was sued by Lerato Nomvuyo Mzamane, who was the headmistress of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa until allegations in October 2007 that a dormitory matron sexually assaulted six girls. Winfrey and Mzamane met privately in Chicago yesterday and agreed to settle the case, according to two people with knowledge of the meeting.
NEWS
January 14, 2010 | By Jeff Shields INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
A Common Pleas Court jury is expected to begin deliberations today on whether a vitriolic leaflet campaign against City Councilman Jack Kelly and "the homosexual agenda" in 2007 was defamatory. Testimony wrapped up yesterday in the civil trial of 80-year-old Paul D. Corbett, sued by Kelly over his guerrilla-style campaign attacks that each side says nearly cost the Republican councilman his at-large seat in the 2007 general election. Corbett spread fliers in the weeks leading up to the Nov. 6 election to force Kelly to change his May 2007 vote to end a dollar-a-year lease agreement between the city and the Boy Scouts' Cradle of Liberty Council that dates back to 1928.
NEWS
January 14, 2010 | By CHRIS BRENNAN, brennac@phillynews.com 215-854-5973
Paul Corbett, the man who accused City Councilman Jack Kelly in a 2007 flyer of "voting with the homosexual lobby" to "promote sodomy to our youth," told a jury yesterday that he was trying to protect Boy Scouts. Corbett, who is being sued by Kelly for defamation, said that he was angered after City Council voted in 2007 to force the local Boy Scouts chapter to move its headquarters off city-owned land unless the group stopped violating the city's anti-discrimination law by banning homosexuals.
NEWS
January 13, 2010 | By Jeff Shields INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The first day of trial testimony in City Councilman Jack Kelly's defamation case against an octogenarian pamphleteer who in 2007 branded Kelly a supporter of the "homosexual agenda which would promote sodomy to our youth" reached rare heights of courtroom theater yesterday. In the morning, Common Pleas Court Judge Albert J. Snite Jr. threatened to arrest the defense attorney, who promptly called for a mistrial. In the afternoon, the same defense attorney caused another brouhaha when he suggested that a gay former city solicitor's legal opinion to end a city lease with the local Boy Scouts could have been influenced by his sexual orientation.
NEWS
January 13, 2010 | By CHRIS BRENNAN, brennac@phillynews.com 215-854-5973
City Councilman Jack Kelly is suing for defamation a man who circulated fliers before a 2007 election, accusing him of "voting with the homosexual lobby" to "promote sodomy to our youth. " But the first day of the trial was overwhelmed at the start and finish by what Common Pleas Judge Albert Snite Jr. had to say about defense attorney C. Scott Shields, who represents Paul Corbett in the case. At one point, it looked like Shields might be hauled off in handcuffs. Snite interrupted Shields' opening argument when the attorney started quoting from the state constitution's free-speech provision.
NEWS
January 12, 2010 | By CHRIS BRENNAN, brennac@phillynews.com 215-854-5973
Are political fliers, distributed just before an election, that accuse a city councilman of voting "with the homosexual lobby" to "promote sodomy to our youth," a statement of fact or opinion? That's a question a Common Pleas Court jury will begin considering this morning when Councilman Jack Kelly's defamation lawsuit against Paul Corbett gets under way. Corbett, 80, was incensed after Kelly and 15 other Council members voted in May 2007 to force the local Boy Scouts chapter to pay $200,000 per year or move off city-owned property it had rented for $1 per year since 1928.
NEWS
April 7, 2009 | ASSOCIATED PRESS
HARRISBURG - Pennsylvania's highest court is revisiting a $3.5 million defamation verdict against The Citizens' Voice newspaper because of the role played by two former judges at the center of a juvenile justice scandal. The state Supreme Court today appointed a judge to examine the Wilkes-Barre newspaper's claim that corruption was involved in the handling of the lawsuit by a businessman and one of his companies. The high court wants the judge to recommend whether a new trial is warranted.
NEWS
February 3, 2009 | By Martha Woodall INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Several parents at the Agora Cyber Charter School in Devon who asked questions about the school's finances have been sued by the founder and her management company. Dorothy June Brown contends that the parents and the Agora Parent Organization defamed her and Cynwyd Group L.L.C. in complaints sent to the state Department of Education and in e-mails circulated to other parents at the statewide cyber school. The parents say they were just trying to get answers about the relationship between Cynwyd Group and Agora.
SPORTS
December 20, 2008 | Daily News Wire Services
Mississippi coach Andy Kennedy filed suit against a cabdriver who charged him with assault and a parking valet who said he witnessed the incident, charging both with defamation. Attorney Richard Katz said he filed the suit yesterday afternoon in Hamilton County (Ohio) Court of Common Pleas. Named as defendents in the suit were driver Mohammed Oulf Jiddou and valet Michael Strother. The suit asks for damages of more than $25,000 from each. Jiddou, 25, a native of Mauritania, in northwest Africa, charged that Kennedy, 40, struck him in the face and used racial insults, including calling him Osama bin Laden, after trying to get into his cab, after he and several members of his coaching staff had left a bar in downtown Cincinnati.
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