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Petersburg court dismisses lawsuit against Madonna

November 22, 2012, 23:54 UTC+3

St Petersburg‘s Moskovsky District Court on Thursday dismissed the 333-million ruble civil suit against US pop star Madonna

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ST PETERSBURG, November 22 (Itar-Tass) —— St Petersburg‘s Moskovsky District Court on Thursday dismissed the 333-million ruble civil suit against US pop star Madonna. The nine plaintiffs were suing her for the sum as compensation for moral damage from her concert in St Petersburg on August 10.

“The court in its ruling has rejected the claim that Madonna, the joint stock company Planeta Plus, and the Peterburgsky sports-and-concert complex (the co-respondents under the lawsuit) should pay for moral damage,” said Justice Vitaly Barkovsky who examined the case. Under the court’s decision the nine activists of a local public organization, who filed the lawsuit against the singer, will have to bear court expenses. They will have to pay 60,000 rubles each to compensate for the lawyers’ fees.

Darya Dedova, representing the plaintiffs, said the court decision was biased. She said the plaintiffs were going to complain against the district court‘s decision to a higher instance. “If it were not for the names and high standing, if it were not for Madonna and the sum of 333 million rubles involved, the case would have been decided in no time, and in our favor, too,” she said. “The Moskovsky District Court decided not to get entangled, and police also told us they had no wish to participate in a political case. We will not stop at that, and we hope that the judicial authorities will acknowledge that we were right sooner or later,” Dedova added.

Olga Lototskaya, the spokesperson of Corporation PMI that organized Madonna’s concert in St Petersburg, said the company is absolutely satisfied with the court’s decision. “We have won the case; the judge decided not to grant the nine plaintiffs’ claim. We are glad very much that the matter is over and we can get down to work undisturbed,” she said.

“The plaintiffs must fully compensate for the spending on lawyers’ fees, as the court, naturally, acknowledged this,” Lototskaya said.

The plaintiffs believe that during her concert in St Petersburg the pop diva violated the local law on the protection of minors’ rights by publicly supporting Russian sex minorities. Administrative responsibility for propaganda of homosexuality and other forms of untraditional love among minors, as well as propaganda of pedophilia, was established in the city from March 2012.

The hearing proceeded without participation of the singer’s lawyers. The parties acknowledged they were not sure Madonna was aware of being sued.



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