Incoming First Lady Melania Trump visited Montgomery County Circuit Court as part of her defamation lawsuit against a local blogger Webster Griffin Tarpley and the Daily Mail, her attorney Charles J. Harder said.
“Mrs. Trump was not required to attend the court conference, but chose to do so, to meet the judge, meet opposing counsel, and show her commitment to the case,” Harder said.
Attorney Donna McBride said she filed the complaint in Montgomery County Circuit Court because Tarpley lives in the county.
McBride in the lawsuit accuses the defendants of publishing false information and intentionally defaming the incoming first lady.
She said Tarpley wrote that Melania Trump worked as an escort and that she suffered a mental breakdown during President-elect Donald Trump (R)’s campaign, which McBride said are not true statements.
McBride said in the lawsuit Tarpley made a slew of false statements including, “‘It is also widely known that Melania was not working as a model but rather a high end escort,’” and “‘Melania is said to be most afraid that some of her former clients will now come forward and implicate her as a luxury escort.’”
She accused Tarpley of actual malice against Trump.
“On information and belief, Tarpley published the Tarpley Blog Post while consciously doubting the truth of the claims in the article and thus acted with actual malice,” McBride said in the lawsuit.
She said the statements are of “injurious character” and defamation because the post has the potential to damage her reputation, business, economic relationships and potential future economic relationships.
“As a result of Tarpley’s conduct, (Trump) has been damaged in an amount to be proven at trial,” McBride said in the complaint.
She asks an amount in excess of $75,000 in compensatory and punitive damages.
McBride also asked for permanent injunction against the statements quoted in the lawsuit, so they’re not printed in the future.
The attorney similar charges against the Mail Media Inc. for reporting the incoming first lady worked as an escort and that the president-elect and his wife lied about the day they first met, according to the lawsuit.