Belle de Jour's ex to sue after claiming sex blogger made up details of life as a call girl

The ex-boyfriend of former sex worker and blogger Brooke Magnanti is set to follow up his libel payout from Times Newspapers by suing the bestselling writer for defamation.

Owen Morris, who last month won substantial libel damages over Sunday Times allegations that he had threatened Magnanti, will claim that she made up details about clients, her own sex life and relationship with him in her blog and subsequent book.

Magnanti’s Belle de Jour blog depicting her life as a London call girl was turned into two successful books and spawned an ITV drama series, starring Billie Piper.

But Morris, who was known as ‘The Boy’ in the blog, will claim that Magnanti’s accounts of life as a prostitute in the capital were first written while she was a PhD student in Sheffield.

He is also suing for breach of privacy after he claimed he was easily identified as a central character in Magnanti’s writing when she revealed her identity in a Sunday Times interview in 2009.

Morris, a former RAF officer, told The Mail on Sunday this weekend that he has been unable to find work since being unmasked four years ago.

He said: “The Belle de Jour myth has ruined me and rendered me unemployable. The private lives of me, my family and friends were not only used without my knowledge or consent, but twisted and darkened…

“I am suing her because I want to be left alone and stop Brooke destroying my life further.”

He added that Magnanti made up her claims to have worked as a prostitute and even speculated that she could have learnt some details about the trade from her academic research when she was studying to be a forensic scientist.

“The books are fantasy,” he said. “I don’t believe that Brooke was a prostitute and I should know as we were together and lived in each other’s pockets. 

“I fear the reason she knew so much about prostitution is because part of her job was studying murdered prostitutes in the morgue. 

“I find it deeply disturbing that she used that material to glamourise prostitution – nobody knows the dangers more than her.”

Magnanti responded to the claims in her blog on Sunday, saying she will present bank records to the court showing the deposits she made in 2003-04 from her work as an escort and a diary, which she claims was written by Morris, revealing he knew about her work.

She described the allegations as “fantasist nonsense” and suggested that The Mail on Sunday had not fact-checked his story.

“It's amazing to me the MoS made no effort at all to match anything he said against things that are easy to find and in the public domain,” she wrote. “Or his solicitors for that matter. But that's by the by, and will come out in due course.”

She added: “I look forward to rebut all claims Mr Morris will be making in court.”

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