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January 12, 2010

Peaches accepts libel damages

Category: News

Daily Star apologises to Peaches Geldof for 'prostitute' claim


Peaches Geldof accepted libel damages today over a claim on the front page of the Daily Star that she charged £5,000 a night for sexual services, the High Court heard.

The 20-year-old journalist, TV presenter, model and DJ initially made a complaint to the Press Complaints Commission over a front page article in September 2008 which had a headline that read “Peaches: Spend the night with me for £5k”.

Whilst Express Newspapers, the publisher of The Daily Star accepted before the PCC that the prominent front page headline implied that Ms Geldof “provided services of a personal sexual nature for the payment of a fee”  and was untrue it refused Ms Geldof’s request for a front page retraction and apology and instead published an apology on page 2 which was ‘substantially smaller.’

The PCC then adjudicated upon the prominence of the page 2 apology and ‘found it to be proportionate.’ Ms Geldof was dissatisfied with this and sued for libel.

Today in the High Court her solicitor Jonathan Coad read out a statement confirming that the newspaper ‘is here … to withdraw the allegations unreservedly and to apologise publicly to [Ms Geldof] for the distress caused to her. He went on to say that Express Newspapers  had paid Ms Geldof “a substantial sum” by way of damages and agreed to pay her legal costs.

The newspaper ‘s solicitor, Zoe Norden, confirmed that  her client “accepts there is no truth in the allegation made in the article, and apologises to [Ms Geldof] for any distress caused by the publication.”

To view the statement read in the High Court today in full, please click on the pdf icon at the foot of the page.

5RB‘s Adam Speker acted for Peaches Geldof, instructed by Jonathan Coad of Swan Turton.

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