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Former American Idol Contestant Sues FOX For Defamation Over Paula Abdul Affair Claims

January 30, 2013 | Posted by Jeremy Thomas

The former American Idol contestant who famously claimed to have had an affair with Paula Abdul during his time on the show has filed a lawsuit against FOX, E! Entertainment and two law firms claiming that they defamed him in the aftermath of those claims. THR reports that Corey Clark, who was kicked off of Idol because producers claimed he had not disclosed a previous arrest when he signed onto the show, has filed a suit in Tennessee federal court claiming defamation in regard to comments made about his departure from the show, as well as the alleged affair.

Clark claims in the lawsuit that a book proposal began to circulate about the supposed affair and that American Idol’s lawyer threatened to sue for $5 million for breaching his confidentiality agreement. Clark still decided to speak with ABC news about the affair, which aired as a one-hour special. Clark then claims that the two law firms that FOX retained as “independent counsel” to conduct an investigation of the alleged affair were not truly independent, as Gibson Dunn had down work for FOX in the past while Morrison & Foerster had worked for FreemantleMedia, who produces Idol. Based on their work, FOX declared that Abdul had been cleared of any wrongdoing.

Clark is suing specifically over statements made after all of this, including during an episode of E! True Hollywood Story focusing on Abdul that denied the affair. Clark is suing for libel, false-light invasion of privacy and a third count for conspiracy to commit commercial product disparagement.

This is the second legal matter Clark has been involved with against Idol in a week; he is also named as one of nine Idol contestants who filed a petition with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission asking to sue producers over racial discrimination, claiming that black contestants were mistreated by asking about arrest history.

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Jeremy Thomas
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