02 April 2008
Head of Greek Orthodox Church launches legal battle over libel claims
Head of the Greek Orthodox Church Patriarch Theophilos 111 has launched a legal battle over allegations of libel, the Press Gazette reports.
The patriarch is suing HH Saudi Research and Marketing (UK) over an article that appeared in the UK version of the newspaper Asharq Al Awsat which he claims was defamatory.
According to the Press Association, the story stated that he had improperly and illegally sold real estate, parted with properties in Jerusalem and disposed of money raised.
He accuses the publishers of damaging his reputation and causing him great distress and embarrassment.
Theophilos 111 also says that no serious attempt was made to contact him and publish his response to the content of the story.
He is seeking aggravated damages for libel, as well as an injunction banning the publishers from repeating the allegations at the centre of his claim.
Originally from Greece, Theophilos 111 was elected as the 140th Patriarch of Jerusalem and all Palestine on August 22nd 2005.