Revealing Details You Need to Know About Melania Trump’s Lawsuits
When you consider who Melania Trump is married to, it’s no surprise she isn’t a stranger to lawsuits. President Donald Trump has been involved in at least 3,500 legal actions in federal and state courts over the past three decades, USA Today reports.
While she hasn’t racked up quite that many, Melania has had her own share of litigation. Did you know that she has either sued or threatened to sue a major news outlet, a blogger, a YouTuber, and companies in the U.S. and Europe? Read on to learn more revealing details about Melania Trump’s lawsuits.
Daily Mail reported Melania was an escort
In August 2016, a Daily Mail article alleged Melania had worked as an escort. According to the story, a professional modeling agency Melania worked for in the 1990s had also functioned as an escort service. The article quoted a report from a magazine in Slovenia, where Melania was born. It also cited a biography written of her by a journalist named Bojan Pozar.
The article was published as a two-page spread in a printed version in the United Kingdom as well as on the Daily Mail website. In addition to the escort claims, it also alleged Melania lied about her move to the United States. The story reported that the allegations were denied by both Melania and Paolo Zampolli, head of the modeling agency.
Next: How did Melania react to the Daily Mail report?
Melania Trump vs. Daily Mail
Melania reacted by filing a libel lawsuit against Daily Mail. The suit claimed the article harmed her opportunities “to launch a broad-based commercial brand in multiple product categories.”
The lawsuit noted “the plaintiff is one of the most photographed women in the world,” and asserted “the plaintiff’s brand has lost significant value.” Melania had been selling her jewelry and skincare products on QVC and elsewhere over the years.
In a settlement, Daily Mail agreed to pay unspecified damages to Melania. (New York Daily News reported the payment was for $2.9 million.) Daily Mail also published a retraction with an apology. “We apologize to Mrs. Trump for any distress that our publication caused her,” it read.
Next: A Maryland blogger played a role.
Melania vs. a Maryland blogger
Blogger Webster Tarpley from Maryland also made similar claims to those by Daily Mail. He too was named in Melania’s lawsuit. Not only did Tarpley, 71, report that Melania had been an escort, but he also claimed she may have suffered a nervous breakdown after her speech at the Republican National Convention.
Like Daily Mail, Tarpley also settled with Melania. He issued a statement which read in part, “I posted an article on August 2, 2016 about Melania Trump that was replete with false and defamatory statements about her.”
Next: A lawsuit involving Melania’s skincare line
New Sunshine LLC vs. Melania Trump
In addition to her jewelry line which was a successful seller on QVC, Melania developed a caviar skincare line that included a firmer, moisturizer, night cream, and exfoliator. In 2011, she signed on with New Sunshine LLC to serve as holding company for the products.
About a year later, New Sunshine imploded due to internal feuds and litigation between its founders. Amidst this mess, one executive decided to sue Melania herself, attempting to void her contract. This signaled the end of the skincare line, after it had barely even started shipping to stores.
Next: See the lawsuit’s outcome.
Outcome of New Sunshine litigation
In the lawsuit filed against Melania, a deal was reached out of court. In turn, Melania went on to sue New Sunshine a year later for $50 million, an amount she felt she would have earned if the product had been properly launched. She settled out of court.
During the lawsuit against Melania, she testified in 2013 in an Indianapolis courtroom about the damage her product had suffered. “I got a lot of bad responses back from my fans that they are trying to buy the skincare line, and it is not available,” she said. “And they were saying I should fire my team … this is not how business is done, and they were blaming me. They were blaming my brand, and I had nothing to do with it. I was pushing it … [and] the product was nowhere to be found.”
Next: Melania vs. a Croatian company
Melania vs. a Croatian English language school
If you put her face on billboards without her consent, Melania will go after you. That’s what she did when an English language company in Croatia ran billboard ads featuring a painting of her in September 2017. “Just imagine how far you can go with a little bit of English,” the ad read. The image featured Melania in a cream-colored dress, standing in front of a microphone.
Melania’s lawyers gave the school 24 hours to remove the billboards or face legal action. The school, Americki Institut, complied and also posted a video on its Facebook page of the song “I’m Sorry” by 1960s country star Brenda Lee.
Next: She’s taken on other European companies.
Melania vs. a Slovenian honey seller
After her husband was elected president, various items were cropping up for sale in Melania’s homeland of Slovenia bearing her name and likeness. In fact, this became so rampant she felt the need to hire a law firm there to help enforce this.
Unauthorized products named after Melania included honey jars with labels showing her smiling face with the inscription, “from the home garden of Melania Trump.” Also bearing her name were cakes decorated with golden dust, high heel shoes, a line of underwear, a type of salad, and even a big Christmas tree in Slovenia’s capital.
Melania reportedly had not launched any legal claims against the Slovenian product sellers.
Next: Melania vs. a YouTuber
Melania vs. a YouTuber
In 2016, YouTuber James Hunter faced a legal threat from Melania after he posted a video claiming her son Barron Trump could be autistic. The speculation in the video was based on the way Barron clapped at the Republican Convention that July. Hunter said he created the video in an effort to stop people bullying the ten-year-old online.
Hunter, who is on the autism spectrum himself, complied by removing the video. Incidentally, the video had been shared by comedian Rosie O’Donnell, who received intense public backlash for doing so. O’Donnell responded by saying her daughter Dakota has autism and her post was actually “from the heart.”
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