WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Troubled country western singer Mindy McCready has filed a $50 million lawsuit against the Boca Raton-based National Enquirer, claiming it defamed her in a June 13 article accusing her of being a drug addict and a bad mother.
In the lawsuit filed in Palm Beach County Circuit Court, attorneys for the 35-year-old Fort Myers native claim she has lost at least $50 million worth of business opportunities as a result of the litany of negative — and false — claims the weekly newspaper made about her.
American Media Inc., the newspaper's parent company, "published the false statements and created the grossly misleading implications with actual malice knowing that the article was false, or with a reckless disregard for the truth," attorney Andrew Douglas wrote in the lawsuit filed on Monday.
Attorney Deanna Shullman, who represents American Media, said the newspaper had no intention of publishing a retraction. The information, she wrote, came from a reliable source: McCready's mother, Gayle Inge.
However, Douglas countered, Inge is far from unbiased. She and McCready, who are estranged, are in a bitter custody fight for McCready's 5-year-old son, Zander.
McCready, whose 1996 debut album sold 2 million copies and has had 12 hit singles on the Billboard record charts, has had a messy personal life. She has survived several suicide attempts and has been arrested several times — including for using a fake prescription to get Oxycontin, violating her probation and getting into a fight with her mother.
McCready made headlines when she said she had an under-age affair with baseball star Roger Clemens, a claim he denied. She released an album last year and said she was working to battle her demons.
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