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Royal Family

Meghan Markle wins defamation case filed by half-sister Samantha

Samantha Markle, Meghan’s half-sister, filed a defamation lawsuit against the Duchess of Sussex, which was recently dismissed.

Meghan Markle wins defamation case filed by half-sister Samantha

Meghan Markle’s half-sister, Samantha Markle, attempted to sue the Duchess of Sussex over claims made in Meghan’s interview with Oprah Winfrey and the unauthorized biography ‘Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan’.

Samantha filed the lawsuit in Florida in March 2022 where she sought $75,000 in damages. However, a Florida judge recently dismissed the case.

According to U.S. District Attorney Judge Charlene Edwards Honeywell, Meghan “cannot be held liable for statements in a book that she did not publish” and telling Oprah she “grew up as an only child” does not qualify for a defamation lawsuit.

Meghan and Samantha’s tumultuous relationship

Meghan, 41, and Samantha, 58, are half-sisters through their father, Thomas Markle. In the lawsuit, Samantha claimed that she and Meghan were “close during childhood” but drifted after Meghan entered a romantic relationship with Prince Harry in 2016.

In 2018, Samantha made a statement saying that their father should have been in attendance at Meghan and Harry’s wedding. According to Samantha, she’s been subjected to negative press since and blames Meghan.

‘Oprah with Meghan and Harry’

In March 2021, Meghan and Harry sat down for an exclusive interview with Oprah Winfrey where the couple opened up about a range of topics.

Samantha took issue with the fact that Meghan stated she “grew up as an only child”.

“As a reasonable listener would understand it, Defendant merely expresses an opinion about her childhood and her relationship with her half-siblings. Thus, the Court finds the Defendant’s statement is not objectively verifiable or subject to empirical proof,” Honeywell wrote.

‘Finding Freedom’

Samantha also attempted to sue her sister for the contents written about her in ‘Finding Freedom: Harry and Meghan’. Though this did not hold up in court as the book was written by Carolyn Durand and Omid Scobe.

Her main issue was with a chapter titled ‘A Problem Like Samantha’ which focused on Meghan and Harry’s love story while taking a step back from their royal duties.

“For the foregoing reasons, the court grants the motion to dismiss,” the judge said. “Plaintiff’s claims based on ‘Finding Freedom’ will be dismissed with prejudice, as Plaintiff cannot plausibly allege that Defendant published this book, and amendment of these claims would be futile.

“Plaintiff will be allowed one final opportunity to replead her claims related to Defendant’s CBS interview and her claim for injurious falsehood,” Honeywell concluded.


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