Thursday, December 20, 2007
Tony Parker filed suit against X17 yesterday for allegedly defaming him. In the suit, Parker claimed "X17 had to know that the story was false, or at the very least, it had to have entertained serious doubts about the credibility of its supposed source." The suit asks for $40M in damages.
X17 published stories that French model Alexandra Paressant had "an affair with Mr. Eva Longoria and that the two carried on a secret relationship for about two months."
I like that Mr. Eva Longoria thing. That's funny. I didn't notice that when I first read their story. Tony Parker is a public figure, and as I have said many times here, in order for X17 to lose this case Tony Parker will have to prove that X17 acted with malice. What that means is that Tony must prove that X17 printed the story even though they knew it was not true or printed it with reckless disregard to the truth.
Tony can't prove it and his lawyers must know that as well. I saw one of the letters they sent to another website and they are very aggressive and take the offensive kind of letters, but it still doesn't mean they will win. X17 interviewed the woman and she told them a credible story with dates and facts. She then provided them copies of text message allegedly sent between the couple.
That's good enough. X17 wins. Apparently Tony's people are pissed that X17 didn't ask Tony for comment before running the story. They don't have to. There is no law that says the other side must be allowed to be heard from. Most news agencies do try, but they try 1 minute before deadline and pray for an answering machine and then say no one was available to comment.
Is Tony doing this because Eva is making him, or because everyone will maybe remember the suit instead of the affair allegations? I do know that when Tony gets his case thrown out, he is going to have to pay the legal fees for X17.
I almost forgot. The $40M in damages? In addition to everything else Tony has to prove, he also needs to prove he suffered actual damage. Even if the story is completely untrue, if Parker didn't suffer any damages, he doesn't win. He will have to show that contracts were lost, or endorsements not given to him because of the story. He won't be able to do that, and certainly not $40M worth.