The Pussycat Dolls, the girl group created as a joint venture between US dancer choreographer Robin Antin and Interscope Records, are suing UK news outlet the Daily Mail for defamation.
The UK’s second biggest news outlet (behind The Sun) covered allegations made by former Dolls backup singer Kaya Jones. Over various articles published in 2017, the Daily Mail covered Jones’ claims that the group’s members were “drugged”, that the group was a “front for a prostitution ring”, that Robin Antin was “responsible” for their treatment, and was also responsible for the suicide death of G.R.L. member Simone Battle in 2014 (Antin founded G.R.L after The Pussycat Dolls disbanded in 2010).
One Daily Mail headline on October 17 read as follows:
The 32-page lawsuit filed in New York State on May 21 asks for a financial reward to compensate for harming Antin’s and The Pussycat Dolls’ reputation, but it doesn’t specify an amount.
Antin and The Pussycat Dolls are being represented by King & Ballow’s Richard Busch, the attorney who won the Robin Thicke ‘Blurred Lines’ trial in 2015 for Marvin Gaye’s estate. Busch’s argument resulted in the estate being awarded US$5.3 million and half of future royalties from the song.
In a statement, Busch said: “It’s clear Ms. Jones was an unreliable and biased source simply looking for her 15 minutes of fame, and the Daily Mail could have taken their pick of dozens of sources to contact to see if there was an inkling of truth to the statements, but did not do so.”
Busch continued, “Instead, for pure sensationalism and to grab salacious headlines to sell their product, and without considering what it meant for The Pussycat Dolls, their business or their reputation, the Daily Mail published these defamatory statements with a reckless disregard for the truth.
“Daily Mail’s conduct was malicious and it should be held responsible for the enormous damage The Pussycat Dolls and Robin have suffered as a direct result.”
The Pussycat Dolls released two LPs over their eight-year career (PCD and Doll Domination). The group’s biggest hit was their breakout song ‘Don’t Cha’, which reached #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 2005, peaked at #1 on the ARIA chart, and was one of the biggest selling singles of the year.
Read more at Variety.