Defamation

Woman Settles Claim for Defamation in a DIY Store


 

A woman who claimed she was wrongly accused of not paying for a mop and bucket has settled her claim for defamation in a DIY store for an undisclosed amount.

Ana Malone (66) of Cabra in Dublin made her claim for defamation in a DIY store after visiting Woodies on Malahide Road in October 2012 to buy garden plants and a bucket and mop. After paying for her purchases, Ana left them by the till to first help her ninety-five year old mother and sister back to the car.

A helpful shop assistant carried the garden plants out to the car but, when Ana collected the mop and bucket and took them back to the car, she was stopped by another shop assistant who claimed that Ana had not paid for the goods. Ana had to leave her mother and sister in the car to go back to the DIY store and present her till receipt.

Humiliated by the ordeal, Ana sought legal advice and made a claim for defamation in a DIY store. Woodies denied the allegations and said that the incident was just a misunderstanding. They claimed that Ana had not been ordered back into the store and that it had never been publicly stated that she had failed to pay for the mop and bucket.

Unable to agree a negotiated settlement, the claim for defamation in a DIY store went to the Circuit Civil Court in Dublin, where it was heard by Judge Jacqueline Linnane. Ana told the judge that she had been made a spectacle of in front of other shoppers and had subsequently felt so vulnerable that she had to be treated by her GP.

Judge Linnane also heard that members of staff at the store would testify Ana had never been accused of failing to pay for the mop and bucket, after which an adjournment was requested. When the hearing resumed, Judge Linnane was told that the claim for defamation in a DIY store had been settled and the case could be struck out with an order for Ana´s legal costs.