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Ruby Wax apology over ‘racist’ claims

Comedienne Ruby Wax has agreed to pay undisclosed damages to an Irish television journalist she accused of being ‘racist’ and ‘anti-semitic’, the Irish Circuit Court has been told.

The star was not in court, but her legal team “apologised unreservedly” on her behalf to the journalist, Patricia Danaher, for the remarks. The incident occurred when Danaher, who works for UTV, interviewed the comedienne at Dublin’s Olympia Theatre during an Irish tour of her show Stressed.

After the interview, the court heard, Wax was alleged to have said: “I have never been so insulted in all my life. Who let that bitch in?”

The apology offered in court also covered Justin Green and his MCD Management Service.ie Ltd, of Dun Laoghaire, named with Wax in the defamation action. Wax and Green were alleged to have telephoned Danaher’s UTV bosses in Belfast to complain that she was “rude, offensive, aggressive, provocative and insulting” during the interview, and had called Wax “a Jew”.

Danaher claimed that the words used in the phone call meant she was racist, anti-semitic and unprofessional in her work as a journalist and television interviewer. Wax and Green had originally denied the defamation claim and had indicated they would fight it. But a settlement, involving damages and a public apology, was agreed in negotiations between the legal teams shortly before the hearing was due to get under way.

Senior counsel Paul Gardiner, making the court apology on behalf of Wax, Green and the management company, said: “They accept that Danaher acted properly and professionally in every aspect during the course of her interview with Ms Wax and afterwards.”

Later Danaher said she was very pleased with the outcome. “The apology was crucial,” she added, “because the allegations were so damaging. I am delighted that it’s all over.”