SPARTANBURG, S.C. -- A North Charleston man has been ordered to pay $75,000 to best-selling author Fern Michaels for defamation.

The Herald-Journal of Spartanburg reports Wednesday that Craig Dilley must pay for forwarding a defamatory email to a website that promoted Michaels and other romance authors.

The author filed the lawsuit under her legal name, Mary Kuczkir, against Dilley, his sister — former Spartanburg County resident Shelley Dangerfield — and their mother. The sister wrote the email and sent it to her mother, who forwarded it to Dilley.

Dangerfield was married at the time but in a relationship with the author’s former son-in-law.

The court found Dilley acted in reckless disregard for the truth and intended to harm the author’s reputation, but the emails between Dangerfield and her mother were ruled privileged.


Information from: Herald-Journal,