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.