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Florida Judge Tosses Defamation Suit Against Meghan Markle By Half-Sister

A Florida judge has dismissed Samantha Markle’s defamation suit against half-sister Meghan Markle, saying she was unable to produce evidence that her half-sibling made “disparaging, hurtful and false” remarks about her.

Samantha’s third attempt to pin a defamation claim on the duchess of Sussex was thwarted Tuesday by U.S. District Judge Charlene Edwards Honeywell, who, in a 56-page decision, determined the plaintiff “failed to identify any statements that could support a claim for defamation or defamation-by-implication.” The case was dismissed with prejudice, meaning it can’t be brought back to court.

Samantha Markle had alleged that comments Meghan made during a bombshell 2021 Oprah Winfrey interview with her husband, Prince Harry, Duke of Sussex, caused her “humiliation, shame and hatred on a worldwide scale.” She was seeking $75,000 in damages.

During the CBS News interview, the actor and philanthropist distanced herself from Samantha and their father, Thomas Markle, saying she “grew up as an only child.”

Speaking of her half-sibling’s 2021 book, “The Diary of Princess Pushy’s Sister,” Markle said, “I think it would be very hard to ‘tell all’ when you don’t know me ... I don’t feel comfortable talking about people that I really don’t know.”

In her lawsuit, Samantha Markle alleged that the comments by the now-estranged member of the British royal family suggested that she was an “unwelcome opportunist” who had “concocted a fictitious story to reap some inappropriate reward.”

Honeywell determined that the 18 statements Samantha provided as evidence of defamation had a “plethora of issues,” according to court documents.

In her decision, the judge said the claims were “non-actionable” because Meghan Markle’s comments were either “protected as opinion, substantially true” or did not meet the standard of malice necessary for a statement to be considered defamatory.

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