Stone accepts damages over Mail article

Actress Sharon Stone today accepted substantial undisclosed damages over a claim that she left her son asleep in a car while she enjoyed a late night dinner at The Ivy restaurant.

The Basic Instinct star was not at London's High Court for the settlement of her libel action against the Daily Mail.

Her solicitor, Rupert Grey, told Mr Justice Eady that the newspaper published the article last June accompanied by a photo, taken through a car windscreen at night, of Stone's son, with his face blanked out, asleep in the back with the driver in the front seat.

It said that Stone had left the four-year-old asleep in a car with her driver for more than two hours outside The Ivy while she enjoyed a late-night dinner date with what it described as a "mystery male companion".

Mr Grey said that it included various remarks critical of her for doing so, said that the boy was likely to be uncomfortable in the heat and traumatised by paparazzi flash photography.

"The article conveyed the clear allegation that Sharon Stone had neglected her son in a shameful and selfish way."

The behaviour ascribed to the actress was subsequently reported in other newspapers in the UK and worldwide.

The next month the Daily Mail published another article - "Sharon's dinner date and this time her baby goes too" - which was accompanied by a photo of her carrying her other son, who is two months old, in a carry-cot outside a restaurant.

It reminded readers that three weeks before, Miss Stone had attracted criticism when she left her other son in her car with a minder as she enjoyed a late night meal at The Ivy.

Mr Grey said that the allegations in the first article, and repeated in the second, were completely untrue.

Far from leaving her son outside in the car for two hours - or at all - they had dinner together inside the restaurant. It was their last night together before her son flew back to America the following day.

Neither was there a shred of truth in the allegation that Miss Stone was having a late-night dinner date with a "mystery male companion".

Mr Grey said that Miss Stone was appalled to find these allegations appearing in the Daily Mail and then repeated elsewhere in the media.

She had no option but to issue the claim for libel to set the record straight.

Had it proceeded to trial she would have called evidence from numerous witnesses to demonstrate that her son had dinner with her that night and that he was not left in the car outside.

Those witnesses would have included members of her security team, her driver, staff at The Ivy, and friends dining with her.

Mr Grey said that Miss Stone had accepted a substantial sum in damages which she proposed to give to charity.

She was content to accept this, together with her costs, in view of the apology which the newspaper was to provide in open court.

Kirsty Howarth, solicitor for Associated Newspapers, said that it published the articles in good faith on the basis of information with which it had been provided and which at the time it had no reason to doubt.

However, it was now happy to accept that the allegation was untrue. It withdrew it unreservedly and apologised for the distress and embarrassment caused.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Ashdown Group: Digital Marketing Executive - West London - £35,000

£28000 - £35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A luxury fashion retailer based in W...

Ashdown Group: Front-End Developer / Front-End Designer - City of London

£27000 - £33000 per annum + Excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Front-End Devel...

Recruitment Genius: Sales Ledger & Credit Control Assistant

£14000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Sales Ledger & Credit Control...

Recruitment Genius: Junior PHP Web Developer

£16000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Paul Scholes column: I don't believe Jonny Evans was spitting at Papiss Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible

Paul Scholes column

I don't believe Evans was spitting at Cissé. It was a reflex. But what the Newcastle striker did next was horrible
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable