Judge rules ‘Irish Daily Mail’ defamed Mellon – The Irish Times – Fri, Feb 11, 2011

A JUDGE has found philanthropist Niall Mellon was defamed by a daily newspaper in a report claiming he had sacked a personal assistant shortly before she was due to give birth.

Yesterday Judge Alison Lindsay at the Circuit Civil Court ordered that the publishers of the Irish Daily Mail , Associated Newspapers Ltd, publish a correction and apologise to Mr Mellon after finding he had been defamed in an article that appeared in March last year. The article reported a claim by Helen O’Connor that she had been dismissed after asking him for financial help.

The judge said the newspaper had “no defence” to the action brought by Mr Mellon, who claimed the article contained words that were untrue and inaccurate.

Mr Mellon (44), a property developer from Rathfarnham, Dublin, had brought proceedings under the 2009 Defamation Act arising out of the report claiming he had sacked Ms O’Connor only two weeks before she was due to give birth.