Arbitrator rules claims Miss Universe was rigged were “defamatory”
Earlier this year, Donald Trump and his Miss Universe Organization took Miss Pennsylvania Sheena Monnin to court over claims that she knew for a fact the beauty pageant was rigged. An arbitrator is siding with The Donald, so the beauty queen must pay.TMZ reports that the arbitrator appointed on the case ruled that the Monnin made defamatory claims when she went to the press to say that she knew from another beauty queen that she’d seen a list of the top 5 contestants before the results were announced.
Shortly after Monnin’s claims made headlines, Trump urged her to recant, saying he would otherwise sue, which is precisely what he did.
Also then, the real estate mogul, who owns the Organization, denied the claims, saying they were fabrications a poor loser had come up with as a way to have her revenge.
Now, the beauty queen must pay $5 million (€3.77 million) to the Miss Universe Organization for defamation.
“The case went to arbitration and now, the retired U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge who oversaw the case ruled that Monnin DID defame the Miss Universe Org., and awarded M.U.O. $5 million [€3.77 million] in damages,” TMZ reports.
In a statement to the same media outlet, Trump expresses his wish that things didn’t go as far as they did but, at the same time, his hope that this will be a lesson for other beauty queens who might be tempted to lie for attention.
“We cannot allow a disgruntled contestant to make false and reckless statements which are damaging to the many people who have devoted their hearts and souls to the Miss Universe, Miss USA and Miss Teen USA pageant systems,” Trump says.
“While I feel very badly for Sheena, she did the wrong thing. She was really nasty, and we had no choice. It is an expensive lesson for her,” he adds.