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Saturday 21 October 2017

Beauty queen won't give €76k tiara back

A dethroned beauty queen from Myanmar said she won't return her bejewelled $100,000 (€76,000) crown until pageant organisers apologise for calling her a liar and a thief.

May Myat Noe - the 2014 Miss Asia Pacific World winner - told a news conference that she had done nothing wrong to cause her to be dethroned.

She denied accepting breast implants, as claimed by David Kim, director of media for the South Korea-based pageant.

He said the surgery was provided free of charge, part of efforts to boost the teen into super-stardom.

Kim said she was stripped of her title last week because she was dishonest and unappreciative - and that she ran off with her tiara.

Noe said she boarded a plane for Myanmar before learning that she had been dethroned.

While she had no interest in keeping the crown, she was not going to give it back without a "sorry".

"I'm not even proud of this crown," she said after opening a blue box and placing the tiara on the table in front of her.

reputation

"I don't want a crown from an organisation with such a bad reputation.

"But I won't give it back to the Koreans unless they apologise," she said. "Not just to me but my country."

The Miss Asia Pacific World pageant, now in its fourth year, is no stranger to controversy.

In 2011, Wales-representative Amy Willerton and several other contestants alleged the contest had been fixed after the young woman representing Venezuela was apparently named runner-up of the talent round before competing.

The argument with organizers - captured on video and uploaded to YouTube under the title "Confessions of a Beauty Queen" - was widely circulated in the pageant community.

Some of the contestants also accused officials of asking the women for sex in return for higher placement, and charged that the police were bribed.

Those allegations were denied by Kim.

hnews@herald.ie

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