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Swedish princess wins suit against publisher

Swedish Princess Madeleine is seen in this 2007 file photo. She won a lawsuit against a German publisher, which was ordered to pay damages for fabricating stories about her.

Swedish Princess Madeleine is seen in this 2007 file photo. She won a lawsuit against a German publisher, which was ordered to pay damages for fabricating stories about her.

A HAMBURG court has ordered a German publisher to pay Sweden's Princess Madeleine 400,000 euros (US$560,000) in damages for fabricating stories about her, the parties involved said yesterday.

Sonnenverlag GmbH & Co KG was ordered to pay the damages by the Hamburg state court, which was ruling on an appeal against a lower court's 2007 award of 300,000 euros in damages against the publishing house.

The publisher's magazines carried false reports about the 27-year-old princess being engaged and pregnant, among other things, her attorney Matthias Prinz said.

Madeleine has been dating Jonas Bergstrom since 2002, but the couple is neither engaged nor married, nor do they have any children.

Sonnenverlag puts out a raft of magazines in Germany, and the reports were carried in two weekly women's publications, Frau mit Herz (Woman with Heart) and Welt der Frau, (Woman's World), Prinz said.

"There were scores of untruthful articles about my client in the publications," he said.

The Hamburg state court confirmed that the judgment had been made on Thursday.

The Swedish Royal Court said in a statement that the court ruled the articles were "untrue and degrading."

"Princess Madeleine intends to donate the money she is finally awarded to charity," the statement said.

Sonnenverlag's parent company, Baden-Baden based KLAMBT media group, also confirmed the ruling in a short statement.

"The amount of the court-ordered damages and the related charges are in the range expected by the KLAMBT media group," it said.

Madeleine Therese Amelie Josephine -- the Princess of Sweden, Duchess of Halsingland and Gastrikland -- is the youngest of three children of King Carl XVI Gustaf and Queen Silvia.
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