According to The New York Times, the Daily Telegraph in the United Kingdom agreed to pay “substantial damages” and apologize to Melania Trump for “false statements” relating to her personal life.
Last Saturday’s Telegraph magazine featured the narrative “The mystery of Melania.” After interviews with “White House insiders, Slovenian school pals, and photographers,” the piece detailed the “most private and enigmatic” of presidential spouses.
According to the newspaper, the story on Donald Trump’s wife should not have been published.
“We apologize personally and unreservedly to Melania Trump and her family for the embarrassment that was caused by our reporting of these claims,” the newspaper stated. “In recognition of our wrongdoing, we have decided to compensate Mrs. Trump and also pay for her legal expenses.”
The article, written by Nina Burleigh, a Newsweek national political reporter who is also the subject of her forthcoming book Golden Handcuffs: The Secret History of Trump’s Women, was an extract from that book.
The Daily Telegraph removed the article from its website and issued a detailed retraction.
“Mrs. Trump’s father was not a threatening figure and did not dominate the family. Mrs. Trump did not drop out of her design and architecture course at university because she failed an exam, as stated in the story, but rather because she wanted to become a successful professional model. Before meeting Mr. Trump, Mrs. Trump was not failing in her modeling career, and Mr. Trump had nothing to do with her career advancing.”
“We acknowledge that Mrs. Trump was a successful independent model prior to meeting her husband and obtaining modeling jobs without his help.”
The correction stated: “Mrs. Trump met Donald Trump in 1998, not in 1996, as reported in the piece. The article also incorrectly stated that Mrs. Trump’s sister, father, and mother, moved to NY in 2005 to live in properties owned by Mr. Donald Trump. They did not do so. It is also false to claim that Mrs. Trump wept on election night.”
In April 2017, another British newspaper, the Daily Mail, agreed to pay Melania Trump $3 million as part of a settlement for claims about her modeling career.
The article was published in August 2016 during the U.S. presidential election, but it was removed two weeks later after being exposed as fraudulent.