Clauses Noted: 1
Publication: The Sun
Mathew Shaw of Reading (who was not complaining as a representative of Robert Mugabe) complained that the newspaper had published an online article which featured photographs of a “palace with 30 bedrooms…where no expense was spared” and alleged that it belonged to Robert Mugabe. The complainant said the claim that the house belonged to Mr Mugabe was an urban myth.
The newspaper initially provided an article from the Daily Telegraph which it said featured the same house and made the same claim in respect of Robert Mugabe. The managing editor also said a Zimbabwean correspondent had confirmed the information.
The complainant provided evidence to dispute the claim that the house featured was the same as that which appeared in the Daily Telegraph. He contended that the house was in fact used on the movie set of the film Beethoven’s 4th (set in the US). He provided stills from the film which showed a “remarkable resemblance” to the house in the article. The newspaper thanked the complainant for drawing the issues to its attention and, given the nature of the evidence he had provided, it removed the article from its website.
The complainant considered that the newspaper might have published a correction or apology on the point but decided to resolve the matter on the basis of the removal of the online article.
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