Bing's Not a Bad Guy, Court Rules

Steve Bing may have dismissed a pregnant Liz Hurley with a caddish "I'm not your baby's Daddy," but don't call the millionaire playboy a bad guy--or else. A British newspaper has been ordered to apologize to Bing for falsely accusing him of mounting an anti-Hurley smear campaign. Daily Mail editor Paul Dacre and journalist Daniel Jeffreys publicly apologized to Bing and his attorney-to-the-stars, Marty Singer, in London's High Court on Wednesday. The newspapermen have also agreed to fork over "substantial sums" to British children's charities. "They accept that the article was not true, and they sincerely apologize for the embarrassment and distress which they have caused the claimants. They have undertaken not to repeat the libels," said the defendants' attorney, Rebecca Jackson. When told Hurley was with child, Bing initially claimed the kid wasn't his, suggesting the two, who dated for 18 months from 2000-01, were "not in an exclusive relationship when she became pregnant." Meow-ouch! Hurley claimed otherwise. Regardless, three weeks after Damian Charles' birth on April 4, 2002, Bing went to court to officially challenge the paternity claim. But a DNA test subsequently proved that the Brit babe was right, Bing was the father of her child. He has since offered to provide Hurley with child support, but the handout was rejected by the still-stung supermodel, who called the cash "not wanted or welcome." Bing's initial brush off raised the ire of Hurley's fellow countrymen, who publicly raked the sometime movie producer and real-estate heir over the coals via the tabloid press. The current libel suit stemmed from a December 22, 2001, article published in the Daily Mail that claimed Bing and Singer tried to drag Hurley's name through the mud. Bing's attorney Nathalie Paterson detailed the article's allegations before the English court: "According to the Daily Mail's article, the so-called "anti-Hurley" team deployed by Mr. Bing included a private detective named Anthony Pellicano who was engaged to "dig up dirt" on her and lawyer Perry Wander, plus a string of models. "The alleged purpose of the campaign was to reduce the sum of money which a California jury would order Mr. Bing to pay Ms. Hurley in any paternity suit brought against him if he should prove to be the father of her child. "The defendants now accept there was no truth whatsoever in these allegations. No such campaign was waged or orchestrated by Mr. Bing or by Mr. Singer on Mr. Bing's behalf. "They had not instructed Anthony Pellicano, or the others named in the article to brief the media against Ms. Hurley. Mr. Singer has not been involved in a campaign to black Ms. Hurley's name," concluded Paterson. Wednesday's court victory was the second Bing has scored over the Daily Mail. Last year, he took the paper to court after it called him a "sleazeball," published his phone number and encouraged readers to call him up and "say exactly what you thing of him." The paper later issued a front-page apology to settle the suit. Some in Hollywood, where Bing has burned bridges, may sympathize with the tabloid's cause. Last year, Bing, 38, found himself in the middle of another paternity battle, this one involving billionaire MGM owner Kirk Kerkorian. Kerkorian's ex, onetime tennis pro Lisa Bonder, has asked the movie mogul to pay $320,000 a month in child support for her four-year-old daughter. But Kerkorian balked, claiming Bing fathered the child (Bonder has since admitted the child is not Kerkorian's but has yet to identify the biological father). In May, Bing filed a $1 billion invasion-of-privacy suit against Kerkorian, claiming the mogul had his lackeys go through Bing's trash to find dental floss that they could use for a DNA test to establish Bing's purported paternity--the two moneymen later agreed to a secret deal and that's the last we heard. Not so subtle was Bing's dispute with Sean Penn. The outspoken actor filed a $10 million breach-of-contract lawsuit against the aspiring Hollywood player in February, accusing Bing of reneging on a movie deal because of Penn's outspoken stance against war in Iraq. Bing went one better, filing a $15 million lawsuit against Penn, accusing the "irrational and irresponsible" actor of trying to extort an eight-figure acting fee from the producer. At stake is the validity of an oral agreement the two men reportedly had to produce the anti-matrimonial comedy Why Men Shouldn't Marry. Bing claims Penn wouldn't commit to signing a contract and, as such, forfeited the role. Penn disagrees and wants his $10 million payday under a pay-or-play clause that nets the star his paycheck, regardless of whether the movie is ever made. When not employing lawyers, Bing, whose money comes from his dad's real-estate empire, does produce and write the occasional movie. He helped, um, mastermind the surprise hit Kangaroo Jack and is already working on a sequel. His current infatuation is reportedly ex-Baywatch-er Brooke Burns. Hurley, meanwhile, has been generating plenty of tabloid ink of her own, thanks to her affair with Bombay-based computer mogul Arun Naya. The couple, both 37, have been an item for just four months, but the gossip sheets say Hurley's pushing for marriage--as soon as Naya divorces his wife.

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Hundreds Protest Kidnapping' in Norway's Child Welfare System
Driving rain in Oslo didn't put the several hundred protesters off from making their viewpoint heard, as they assembled by the city's Central Station, before marching towards the parliament building. Banners were held aloft, with messages including: "Children are not business," and, "Bring back our children." They are angry at the Norwegian foster care system 'Barnevernet,' (Child Protection Service), which has seen families in the country lose their children for alleged abuses, such as accidently dislodging a child's loose tooth. Eva Michalkova, who is originally from the Czech Republic, has felt the wrath of the Barnevernet, after she lost her two children."It's a mixture of feelings. It's sadness, frustration, it's a feeling you you don't know what to expect and all you can say is used against you, all you can do is used against you. So it is very difficult," she told RT's Ruptly video agency.READ MORE: 'Similar to Nazi foster care': Czech president slams Norwegian child welfare Michalkova's case stems from an incident in 2011, when her two sons were taken into protective care, after one of her children told a nursery teacher that his father had "groped inside his pajamas," the Norwegian online newspaper Nettavisen reported. No charges were ever brought over the incident, but the Barnevernet placed the children into two separate foster families. The children's parents have since divorced, but Eva is fighting a legal battle to regain custody of her kids. The incident brought a furious response from the Czech President Milos Zeman, who in February compared the Barnevernet system to Nazi Germany's infamous 'Arian breeding program.'"The boys are in a foster facility similar to Lebensborn. Their mother can meet them for 15 minutes twice a year. She must not talk in Czech to them. In other words, the kids are being estranged from their national identity," Zeman said, as cited by the Czech News Agency. In October 2014, the Barnevernet snatched the young son of a Russian couple after the child told classmates that his mother had pulled out a loose tooth. According to Natalya and Sergey Shianok, their son Oskar, who was five at the time, had told fellow kids at his school that his mother had accidently yanked out one of his baby teeth. Natalya explained that she was helping him to pull a T-shirt over his head and knocked out a tooth that was already loose. The Barnevernet said this was child abuse and that the mother had deliberately knocked the tooth out."For the moment Oskar remains in the care of a Norwegian foster family, and his mother has no idea where," says Igor Lapitsky, head of the Russian consulate in Norway, reports RadioVesti.ru.READ MORE: Javelin dentistry: Former Olympic champ removes daughter's tooth with spear In comparison, former US athlete and Olympic gold medal winner, Bryan Clay won praise from across the internet, when he tied a piece of dental floss to a javelin, which he then threw, to dislodge his daughter's loose tooth. Marius Reikeras, a human rights activist is critical of the Norwegian government's spending on Barnevernet, saying that the money could be more effectively channeled elsewhere."We are putting a lot of money in the Child Welfare System. No country in the world puts more money per capita than the government when it comes to CPS. If we could help these families, if we could provide these families with the money we put into the CPS system instead, I am pretty much sure that we could help almost every family," he said. Norway's Child Welfare Services says on their website that they are committed to providing help and support to children, adolescents and parents who are experiencing challenges or difficulties within the family. The service adds that parents are responsible for providing care and protection for their children. "The Child Welfare Services must base its actions on the best interests of the child. Sometimes the child's best interests conflict with those of the parents. The Child Welfare Services' first duty is to provide help and support to the parents, so they can take good care of their children," the service's website said.
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Hundreds Protest Kidnapping' in Norway's Child Welfare System
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