From Iceland — Newspaper Apologises For Printing Falsehood

Newspaper Apologises For Printing Falsehood

Published February 2, 2011

The newspaper Morgunblaðið has printed an open letter to a journalist at DV, apologising for running a story about him that proved to be false.
As reported, Morgunblaðið reported on the “spy computer” story, contending that the computer seized by police that was found in a spare room of parliament offices was linked to a 17-year-old boy who had been arrested last year for stealing documents from a lawyer, and that a journalist at DV, Ingi F. Vilhjálmsson, had not only bought documents from the boy, but was also being investigated by police in connection with the spy computer.
Vísir, doing its own investigation, contacted the police, who said that Ingi was not being investigated, and was not even considered connected to the spy computer.
As a result, a lawyer for the journalist demanded an apology from Morgunblaðið and the journalist who wrote the article, Agnes Bragadóttir, and is seeking one million ISK in damages.
Today, Morgunblaðið printed a public apology to Ingi. The statement reads in part, “It has come to light that Ingi Freyr Vilhjálmsson has not been a suspect [in the case], as was reported by [Agnes] on 21 January. And so it is clear that the article was overstating the facts in this detail.”
The lawyer for Ingi, Vilhjálmur Hans Vilhjálmsson, had given Morgunblaðið until 16:00 yesterday to apologize or be taken to court. He told Vísir that he found the apology lacking, and is going to go ahead with plans to take Agnes to court. Furthermore, he is seeking 2.5 million ISK in damages. The newspaper itself will not be sued.
Newspaper Demands Apology And Damages From Morgunblaðið

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