Last month, Cameron Bay, who is not the woman pictured above, became the first of three U.S.-based adult performers to test positive for HIV. Before Bay came forth publicly, the Daily Mail dashed off an August 22 article about the porn industry shutting down in response to the affected actress's results and illustrated the story with a sultry photo of the above woman, soft-core webcam entrepreneur Danni Ashe. This was a major error for a few reasons: 1) Ashe never tested positive for HIV; 2) Ashe has apparently left the modeling business (the above photo is from 2000); 3) Ashe also never did hardcore porn.
Consequently, Courthouse News Service reports today that Ashe has filed a defamation lawsuit under her legal name, Leah Manzari, against the Daily Mail, asking for three million dollars in damages:
In her filing, the model claims the Daily Mail never sought permission to use her image, and did not include a disclaimer or otherwise make clear that she was not the HIV-positive performer in question.
Manzari "has never tested positive for the HIV virus, nor has she ever had the HIV virus, nor has she ever been performer in the hardcore pornographic film industry," the complaint states. "All of these statements by defendants were false."
The original Daily Mail report is still online ("Porn industry shuts down with immediate effect after 'female performer' tests positive for HIV"), but Ashe's photo has been replaced with a blurry stock image of a lingerie-clad female who looks like she's doing the sexy bunny hop, or something.
Ashe's attorney told XBIZ that a simple disclaimer would've preventing the Daily Mail from injuring his client. Something along the lines of: The woman pictured above is Danni Ashe, a soft-core model who holds the very unique distinction of being on the cover of Juggs and the Wall Street Journal, but says she has never tested positive for HIV, so under no circumstances should you think she has. Something like that.
[image of Danni Ashe, who says she has never tested positive for HIV, via Hulton Archive/Getty Images]
To contact the author of this story, email email@example.com.