herald

Wednesday 23 August 2017

Timberlake and Biel to sue Heat mag in Ireland

Tiger Woods and ex-wife Elin
Tiger Woods and ex-wife Elin

Actress Jessica Biel and her popstar husband Justin Timberlake have lodged defamation proceedings against Heat magazine in the High Court in Dublin.

The couple issued the proceedings in relation to a photograph and article that was published in the British celebrity magazine last month.

The story appeared inside the magazine and on its website and purported to carry quotes from Total Recall actress Biel.

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She and Timberlake, who has a successful singing and acting career, have been married for two years.

Ireland was chosen as the destination for the court lodgement because the couple's US attorney picked the law firm Johnsons to process it, and solicitor Paul Tweed has been chosen to represent them.

Tweed, who has worked for more than 30 years representing stars and celebrities, carries out most of his work from Ireland so chose to lodge the papers in Dublin.

Under European and Irish law, the solicitors are entitled to pick a jurisdiction to lodge proceedings.

Heat is published by a German company but is also sold in Ireland, the UK, and throughout Europe.

Two separate but related defamation proceedings have been lodged by the couple in the last two days in the High Court in Dublin.

The news was confirmed to the Herald by Mr Tweed, who would not be drawn on the background to the proceedings.

"I can only confirm that papers have been lodged in the High Court in Dublin and pleanary summonses issued," said Mr Tweed.

He has represented a number of famous stars and household names in the past, including Jennifer Lopez (inset), Liam Neeson and Britney Spears.

If the case goes ahead to full hearing both Biel (32) and Timberlake (33) would have to come to Dublin to give evidence.

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This would spark massive international media interest.

Most cases of this nature are resolved before going to court, but if the case taken by Biel and Timberlake was to proceed it would not be expected to be heard before next summer.

The couple married in an intimate Italian wedding at the Borgo Egnazia resort in Puglia in 2012, where Timberlake serenaded Biel with a song specially written for her. They had been dating for five years.

Timberlake's work has earned him nine Grammy Awards and four Emmy Awards.

His other ventures include record label Tennman Records, and fashion label William Rast.

Biel has starred in many films, including The Rules of Attraction, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry, The A-Team and Total Recall.

The couple met through mutual friends after Timberlake's split from actress Cameron Diaz, whom he had dated for four years.

hnews@herald.ie

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