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N. Charleston man ordered to pay author in defamation case

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Fern Michaels (Source: fernmichaels.com) Fern Michaels (Source: fernmichaels.com)

SPARTANBURG, S.C. (AP) - A North Charleston man has been ordered to pay $75,000 to best-selling author Fern Michaels for defamation.

Craig Dilley must pay for forwarding a defamatory email to a website that promoted Michaels and other romance authors.

The author filed the lawsuit under her legal name, Mary Kuczkir, against Dilley, his sister - former Spartanburg County resident Shelley Dangerfield - and their mother. The sister wrote the email and sent it to her mother, who forwarded it to Dilley.

Dangerfield was married at the time but in a relationship with the author's former son-in-law.

The court found Dilley acted in reckless disregard for the truth and intended to harm the author's reputation, but the emails between Dangerfield and her mother were ruled privileged.

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