A Bristol mother of five has launched a legal battle for libel damages against Express Newspapers.
Housewife Anna Jean Taylor is suing over a story headed: ”Why do I have to get a job’, moans the scrounging mum-of-five who rakes in £35,000 a year on benefits”, published on 22 February, 2007.
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Taylor is claiming damages limited to £50,000, and brands the Daily Express story is defamatory. The story was illustrated by a large picture of her with her children, captioned ‘Freeloading Family”, according to a High Court writ.
She claims the story meant she was a lazy scrounger who is fit and able to work but instead chooses to “sit on her backside all day” and live off taxpayers money, a benefits cheat by claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance while not seeking work, and “disgusted” at being “ordered” back to work.
Taylor, of 108 Leinster Avenue, Knowle, Bristol, says her reputation has been severely damaged and that she has suffered considerable hurt, embarrassment and distress as a result of the story.
She is also seeking aggravated damages, saying she had not spoken some of the words attributed to her, which were the opposite of her true views. Taylor also says the paper did not contact her first, and has not apologised to her.
Taylor is seeking an injunction restraining Express Newspapers from repeating the allegations about her. The write was issued by Humphreys and Co of Bristol.