Magazine settles suit over rape story

NEW YORK •When the story about an alleged gang rape on a university campus came out in 2014, it drew a huge outcry in the United States.

But the report in Rolling Stone magazine was later debunked, when police investigations found no evidence of wrongdoing at the University of Virginia.

On Tuesday, the Virginia Alpha Chapter of the Phi Kappa Psi fraternity - whose members were alleged to have been behind the incident - said the magazine had agreed to pay US$1.65 million (S$2.28 million) to settle a defamation lawsuit filed over the story.

The fraternity had sought US$25 million and the case had been scheduled to go to trial in October.

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According to The Telegraph, the fraternity plans to donate "a significant portion" of the settlement to groups that provide sexual-assault awareness education, prevention training and victim-counselling services.

Rolling Stone earlier this year settled another defamation lawsuit filed by a university administrator - who claimed that the 2014 story had put her in a bad light - after a jury awarded her US$3 million. The sum was not disclosed.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on June 15, 2017, with the headline 'Magazine settles suit over rape story'. Print Edition | Subscribe