“Real Housewives of Atlanta” cast member Phaedra Parks has filed a $30 million lawsuit against Vibe Holdings, which operates Vibe.com, Uptown Magazine, and Augustus Publishing, saying the outlet has published lies about her to generate interest in a book.
The lawsuit, filed this week, demands a jury trial, $5 million in compensatory and $25 million in punitive damages, and retractions.
“While Plaintiff recognizes the importance of the role of the media in reporting on public figures, Defendant and other members of the media are not granted an unfettered right or privilege under the First Amendment to defame public figures by publishing false and defamatory accusations with actual malice,” the lawsuit states. “As a result of its conduct, Defendant crossed the threshold from speech protected by the First Amendment to enter the arena of actionable defamation of a public figure for which they must be held legally accountable.”
The lawsuit lists articles filed about Parks, beginning with a March 14 one titled “'Real Housewives of Atlanta’ Star Phaedra Parks Exposed.” The articles, the lawsuit says, “falsely accuse Plaintiff of being a crooked attorney who knows how to commit crimes, has committed crimes, and knows how to cover up her criminal activity.