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Complainant Name:
Lucy Phillips

Clauses Noted: 1

Publication: Sunday Mirror

Complaint:

Lucy Phillips complained to the Press Complaints Commission that the newspaper had published an article headlined "Ashley & Blonde...in a loo" which contained a number of inaccuracies. The article appeared on pages one, four and five of the newspaper and was based on the claim that the complainant had been chatted up in a toilet by footballer Ashley Cole.

The complainant said that the basis for the article was "entirely untrue" and identified the following specific points of inaccuracy in the coverage: it stated she was involved in an encounter in a club toilet - which she viewed as sordid - when she was not; it reported that she had said the footballer "tried it on with [her]" when she had denied this when approached by the reporter; and she felt it implied that she had sold her story as a kiss and tell when this was not the case.

The complainant disputed the foundation of the story and said that she was misquoted. She said she simply saw Ashley Cole as she passed the door of the toilets in the club and proceeded to update her Facebook profile with the status "Just seen Ashley Cole in a toilet cubicle, how random, what a midget".

Resolution:

The complaint was resolved when the PCC negotiated the publication of the following correction and apology which appeared in a box on page two of the newspaper with the headline "Lucy Phillips":

In our article of May 16 we reported that Ashley Cole "made a play" for Lucy Phillips in the loos of Notting Hill's Supper Club. We would like to apologise to Ms Phillips for misquoting her in our article; she strongly denied the allegations from our source at the time. Ms Phillips would like to make clear that she did not go into the male toilets, Ashley Cole did not "try it on" with her and she did not kiss him. We would also like to clarify that Ms Phillips did not approach us and was not paid for the story in question. We apologise for any upset caused.

Date Published: 27/08/2010



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