Yes, when it comes to slander and libel laws, the United States is, arguably, the most defendant-friendly nation in the world – but that doesn’t mean defamation plaintiffs never win. Just last week, a woman took on the Boston Herald for libel and won!
What Sparked The Defamation Lawsuit & Eventual Plaintiff Win?
Back in 2009, the Boston Herald ran a series of articles written by Jessica Van Sack about alleged corruption in the city’s prison system. Several times, Van Sack mentioned prison guard Joanna Marinova. At least one time, the reporter said law enforcement officials censured Marinova for sleeping with an inmate at the Old Colony Prison.
Jury Comes Back In Favor Of Plaintiff In Defamation Lawsuit
After years of litigation (no, all slander and libel lawsuits do not take that long to rectify), a trial, and a 15-hour deliberation, the jury came back in favor of the plaintiff to the tune of $563,052.
Lawyers for Marinova praised the decision, saying, “The jury’s verdict informs the public that the Herald and its reporter knowingly published false and damaging statements about Ms. Marinova.”
Boston Herald Plans To Appeal Plaintiff Defamation Win
Predictably, the Boston Herald plans to appeal, insisting that their series to be an “excellent” and “important” journalistic endeavor that led “to a Department of Corrections investigation and certain reform measures,” explained a spokesperson for the paper. He continued, “Lawsuits like the one filed here are serious threats not only to the rights of a free and robust press, but to the rights of the citizenry that expects, and depends upon, that free and robust press. The Herald fully expects to ultimately prevail in this matter.”
Contact A Defamation Attorney Today
Defamation has the power to ruin reputations and businesses. And while U.S. State and Federal defamation laws are extremely defendant-friendly, many people do win defamation claims. In rare circumstances, plaintiffs can even win if the defendant told the truth. When it comes to slander and libel litigation, it is all about case-specific details.
If you have been unfairly besmirched – either online or off – and are curious about your legal options, get in touch with Kelly / Warner Law. Our team of slander and libel lawyers has handled all manners of defamation lawsuits – and our track record gives us bragging points.