Cruise Wins $10 Mil Libel Suit
By City News Service
HOLLYWOOD, January 16, 2003 -- Tom Cruise won a $10 million judgment against a Hollywood man who reportedly told a French magazine he was the actor's lover, the star's attorneys announced today.
Cruise filed the defamation suit against Chad Slater, a former "erotic wrestler'' known professionally as Kyle Bradford, in Los Angeles Superior Court in 2001, seeking $100 million in damages.
Cruise's attorneys requested $10 million when Slater defaulted on the suit last year.
"Tom is very, very pleased,'' attorney Ricardo Cestero said. "We requested $10 million recognizing that we don't know if this guy will satisfy any judgment, but its important for Tom to be able to protect his reputation.''
The magazine story was circulated and published by several tabloids, including the National Enquirer, he said, adding that any proceeds Cruise recovers on the judgment will be donated to charity.
Slater could not be reached today for comment.
Last year, Slater admitted he did not know Cruise and had never met the actor, according to Cruise's lawyers.
"I'm not going to feed into this media circus,'' Slater told reporters then, adding that he would file for bankruptcy if a judgment was entered against him.
A separate $100 million defamation suit Cruise filed in 2001 against Michael Davis, who allegedly sent e-mails to a dozen media outlets claiming he had a videotape of the actor engaged in a homosexual act, was dropped when Davis admitted his claim was untrue.