In a new defamation lawsuit filed against Mail Online over an August 2016 article that accused her of having once worked as an escort, Melania Trump’s legal team states that she had hoped to launch “multimillion-dollar business relationships” now that she’s first lady of the United States.
”Mail Online’s conduct was extreme and outrageous in falsely making the scurrilous charge that the future first lady of the United States worked as a prostitute,” reads the suit, obtained by the New York Post and filed in Manhattan’s Supreme Court by Trump’s lawyer, Charles Harder, who recently helped Hulk Hogan win a $140 million verdict against Gawker for publishing a sex tape. The Florida case was financed by billionaire Peter Thiel, a steadfast supporter of President Donald Trump.
The suit goes on to claim that Melania’s new role as FLOTUS has given her ample exposure, which would have likely resulted in financial gain had Mail Online not published its allegations of prostitution.
”Plaintiff had the unique, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, as an extremely famous and well-known person … to launch a broad-based commercial brand in multiple product categories, each of which could have garnered multimillion-dollar business relationships for a multiyear term during which plaintiff is one of the most photographed women in the world,” the $150 million filing states. “These product categories would have included, among other things, apparel, accessories, shoes, jewelry, cosmetics, hair care, skin care and fragrance.”
Aside from missed business opportunities, the court document claims that the Slovenian-born former model, 46, will not be able to fulfill her duties as first lady following Mail Online’s incriminating claims. “The [statements] also constitute defamation per se because they impugned on her fitness to perform her duties as first lady of the United States,” the suit alleges.
The article at the center of the case, which ran online on August 16, 2016, read, “Naked photoshoots, and troubling questions about visas that won’t go away: The VERY racy past of Donald Trump’s Slovenian wife.” After Melania filed her suit, the story was retracted.
According to the suit, the claims are “completely false” and that Melania — who launched an eponymous jewelry collection for QVC in April 2010 — never worked in the “sex business.”
“As a result of defendant’s publication of defamatory statements about plaintiff, plaintiff’s brand has lost significant value, and major business opportunities that were otherwise available to her have been lost and/or significantly impacted,” the suit adds.
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