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Kristine Aghalaryan

Court of Appeals Rejects Suit Filed by Word of Life Religious Organization

Minutes ago, Armenia’s Court of Appeals rejected the suit filed by the Word of Life religious organization which sought to overturn the July 31, 2012 verdict of a lower court.

The lower court had thrown out the slander suit filed by Word of Life against the newspaper Iravounk.

In his July 31 decision, the presiding judge has ordered that the religious group and its president each pay the newspaper 150,000 AMD for incurred legal fees.

Word of Life had sued the paper for an article that appeared last October showing a collage of photos implicating the organization in a sex scandal involving a well-known Armenian show business personality who is said to be a member.

Word of Life argued that the article was libelous and defamatory and that it incited religious hatred. It wanted the newspaper to retract the article and publish an apology on the front page. The attorney for the group had maintained that the word “sect” was defamatory.

As to financial compensation, the organization was seeking 8,000 AMD for  various court fees and 15,000 for translation and notary services.