Judge Rules Defamation Suit against Beauty Queen Stands
A federal judge on Friday upheld an arbitrator’s ruling that a Pennsylvania beauty queen must fork over $5 million to the Miss USA pageant for defaming the organization that is owned by the real estate mogul Donald Trump.
Miss Pennsylvania, Sheena Monnin, last year resigned her crown saying the pageant was fixed. She claimed that one of her fellow contestants learned prior to the event, who the top five finalists would be on the live show.
Monnin said she decided to turn her crown over as soon as she heard the name of the five finalists during event and they were the same five that her fellow contestant had said.
After the show, Monnin posted many messages on Facebook and spoke openly about her claims of the pageant being fixed.
Trump owns the organization that operates the pageant that sued Monnin claiming defamation. An arbitrator in December of 2012, ruled in favor of the pageant organization. He wrote in his ruling that Monnin had cost the pageant a $5 million fee from a potential sponsor for next year’s pageant.
That decision was upheld this week by a New York U.S. District Court Judge. Monnin had been seeking to have the arbitrator’s decision overturned due to three reasons: the arbitrator disregarded the law, the arbitrator passed his authority and Monnin was not aware the arbitration meeting was being held. However, the judged thought otherwise and ruled against her.
Pageant organizers have claimed that Monnin resigned because she did not agree with the pageant allowing transgender contestants to participate.