Boxer's mum starts legal action against Mirror

The mother of boxer Michael Gomez is suing the Daily Mirror claiming that an interview with her son which appeared in the paper caused her to be abused in the street.

Mary Armstrong is suing for unlimited libel damages over a story headed “I’ve beaten death, drugs, drink and a manslaughter rap – Amir Khan will be no problem!”

She claims the story, published last June, branded her a “child-abusing Fagin” who brought up her children to be criminals, sent them to steal money, and taught her son to shoplift.

Armstrong claims the story has severely damaged her reputation, and caused huge distress and embarrassment.

Two weeks after the story appeared, one of her neighbours in Lord Street, Blackpool, shouted at her in the street, calling her Fagin and a “dirty Irish itinerant”, according to a High Court writ.

Armstrong is also seeking aggravated damages, saying the paper took no steps to check its facts, and did not contact her.

Her solicitors, Carter-Ruck, wrote to the Mirror in August, demanding an apology, but the writ states that the paper refused to provide one.

Armstrong is also seeking an injunction banning repetition of the allegations.

Gomez – born Michael Armstrong – was born in Ireland but moved to England as a child. A former British and world champion, he lost to Khan in the fifth round.

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