Page last updated at 11:10 GMT, Friday, 14 May 2010 12:10 UK

Barry George wins libel damages over obsession claims

Barry George leaving court on 1 August 2008
Barry George was cleared of murdering Jill Dando in 2008

The man cleared of murdering TV presenter Jill Dando after spending seven years in jail has won undisclosed libel damages from a newspaper group.

Barry George brought the case over claims that he was obsessed with singer Cheryl Cole and newsreader Kay Burley.

The claims made in 2008 in the Sunday Mirror, the People and on the Daily Mirror website have been withdrawn by owner MGN.

Mr George was acquitted of the 1999 murder of Miss Dando after a retrial.

At the High Court in London on Friday, Mr George's counsel, Gordon Bishop, said that it was now accepted by MGN that its allegations had been false.

The reports suggested Mr George had threatened to pester and harass Ms Cole and her colleagues so he could meet the Girls Aloud singer and X Factor judge.

It was also claimed Mr George had downloaded pictures of Sky presenter Ms Burley, and said that he loved her and she loved him.

MGN agreed to pay substantial damages and Mr George's costs, and Emily Barber, solicitor for the newspaper group, said that it apologised for any hurt and distress caused to him.

In December last year, Mr George accepted libel damages from News Group Newspapers - owner of the Sun and the News of the World.

That payout related to articles suggesting Mr George murdered Miss Dando, and further claims he was stalking women.

News Group Newspapers apologised for what it said were "false allegations".



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