independent

Friday 25 April 2014

€10,000 damages for girl defamed by off-licence

A 13-YEAR-OLD girl was "having no hand or part" in a bid by two friends to take two cans of beer from an off-licence without paying, a court has heard

Barrister Padraig Lyons told the Circuit Civil Court that when Danika Hopkins' friends popped two cans of beer into her bag she dropped it on the floor and left.

"Danika did not want to engage in such behaviour," he said. "Unfortunately, not only was she blamed for taking goods without paying, the management put up a photo of her in the shop."

Mr Lyons said the photo included Danika (pictured) and her friends and carried a notice reading: "These girls are not to be allowed in this shop."

He said the shop in Pearse Street, Dublin, was owned by KWBC Ltd of Ballyphehane, Cork, and management had refused to take down the photo.

Danika's parents had brought gardai to the shop and they had directed that the photo – which had been up for two weeks – be taken down.

Mr Lyons said the owners had offered Danika, of Ringsend, €10,000 damages in settlement of her claim for defamation of character.

He said Danika, now 15, and her parents agreed that the offer meant KWBC accepted she was not guilty of any wrongdoing.

Judge Matthew Deery approved the offer.

Irish Independent

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