A prison officer in Trinidad and Tobago, who was falsely accused of abandoning her three children on social media, has won over $75,000 in compensation for defamation.
Delivering a 39-page judgment in the country’s second social media defamation case earlier this month, High Court Margaret Mohammed ruled that Ama Charles defamed the prison officer in a Facebook post made on January 24, 2016.
The officer’s name is being withheld to protect the identities of her children, who are minors, and to avoid the republication of the defamatory statement made against her.
According to the Trinidad Guardian, while Charles admitted to making the offensive post on her private Facebook page, she denied that she was responsible for reposting it on the T&T Prison Service’s Facebook site.
The officer had claimed that the republication led to ridicule from her colleagues, her being questioned by her supervisors and facing the possibility of disciplinary action.
Although the High Court agreed that there was no evidence that Charles initiated the repost, she ruled that Charles was still liable for unintended republication by third parties, who had access to the post and her page.