Sunday 18 November 2018

Rowling sues ex-PA over 'spending sprees'

Claim: Harry Potter writer JK Rowling has launched a civil action
Claim: Harry Potter writer JK Rowling has launched a civil action

Auslan Cramb

JK Rowling is suing her former PA for £24,000 (€27,000) over claims she went on shopping sprees with a business credit card.

The 'Harry Potter' author claims Amanda Donaldson (35) broke strict working agreements to buy items including cosmetics and Harry Potter gifts for personal use.

Donaldson, from Coatbridge, Lanarkshire, Scotland, worked for Ms Rowling between February 2014 and April 2017, before being dismissed for gross misconduct.

Legal papers lodged at Airdrie Sheriff Court allege she wrongly benefited to a value of £23,696 by making use of a company credit card.

The author is using her married name, Joanne Murray, in the civil action.

Ms Donaldson is said to have been provided with a credit card and claims all the bills were business-related.

Discrepancies were allegedly picked up in February last year revealing a high volume of personal spending.

She was suspended after meeting an accountant to discuss the use of the card.

She is alleged to have spent £823 at Bibi Bakery, £1,482 with the luxury candle company Jo Malone, £264 in Boots, £115 in Costa Coffee and £3,629 with the cosmetic firm Molton Brown. Ms Rowling is seeking damages for further claims, including that Ms Donaldson spent £2,139 in the card shop Paper Tiger, £1,636 in Starbucks and £235 in Waterstones.

Ms Donaldson, who controlled memorabilia requests from fans, has denied the claims and says the author has "not suffered any loss and is not entitled to damages".

The civil case is due to return to court next month.

Irish Independent

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