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Defamation

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.
NEWS
October 10, 2008 | By Jeff Shields INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Republican City Councilman Jack Kelly is suing a Lawncrest man for a smear campaign that Kelly says nearly cost him last year's general election. Kelly sued Paul D. Corbett and Corbett's loosely assembled group, Citizens Opposed to Politicians Who Pander to Perverts, in Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas last month, asking for at least $50,000 in defamation damages. He is paying his own legal expenses. Kelly argues that Corbett, also a Republican, and other members of COPPP "publicly and privately embarrassed and shamed" him by distributing flyers in church parking lots in the weeks before the November election.
NEWS
October 12, 2007 | By Martha Woodall INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The second-grade teacher who is suing the Baldwin School and the Gladwyne family she said caused her to lose her job is making new allegations: witness intimidation, obstruction of justice, and defamation. In court documents filed late yesterday, Patricia Tollin alleges that the Main Line girls' school and Michael and Sheryl Pouls "have engaged in a pattern of harassing and intimidating witnesses in this matter . . . both on and off the Baldwin School campus. " For example, the amended complaint alleges that a Baldwin trustee "offered a witness in this matter a 'scholarship' for the witness' child, in exchange for testimony favorable to the defendants.
NEWS
December 21, 2006 | By Jan Hefler INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Donald Trump's day in the Philadelphia region wasn't a total bust. Despite the defeat of the developer's casino plan, Trump - angered by a biography that calls him a mere millionaire instead of the billionaire he says he is - won a key court victory that advances his defamation lawsuit against the writer, New York Times reporter Timothy L. O'Brien. State Superior Court Judge Irvin J. Snyder ruled in Camden that O'Brien must disclose the three confidential sources who provided him with financial information about Trump's net worth.
NEWS
July 14, 2006 | By Kathleen Brady Shea INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
In April 1995, a Parkesburg politician's epithet-ridden rant against two colleagues prompted a local newspaper article, which in turn generated a defamation suit against the paper that ultimately made national headlines. More than a decade later - after appellate detours that included the U.S. Supreme Court - the case returned to Chester County, where a confidential settlement yesterday ended three days of testimony. Instead of listening to closing arguments on whether the plaintiffs - former Parkesburg Mayor Alan M. Wolfe and former Council President James B. Norton - deserved monetary compensation from the Daily Local News and its staff for damage to their reputations, the jury was dismissed.
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