Arsenio Hall Sues Sinead O'Connor Over Accusation of Giving Drugs to Prince
In a complaint filed on Thursday in Los Angeles Superior Court, Hall rips into O'Connor as a "desperate, attention-seeker," "now known perhaps as much for her bizarre, unhinged internet rants as for her music."
O'Connor's biggest hit was "Nothing Compares 2 U," a cover version of a Prince composition released in 1990. About a week after Prince died in Minneapolis, O'Connor wrote that Prince was a "long time hard drug user" who "got his drugs over the decades" from Hall.
The television personality says that's absolutely false, and that O'Connor is hardly in any position to know anyhow, having acknowledged that she only met Prince "a couple of times." Hall also states through the lawsuit that he hasn't had any contact with O'Connor in 25 years and that her accusation of criminal conduct is "extraordinarily damaging" to his reputation.
According to the complaint being handled by attorneys Martin Singer and Lynda Goldman, "Ever since O'Connor posed her malicious and reckless lies about Hall on her 'OFFICIAL Facebook page' (where they have been commented on and forwarded thousands of times), her brazen lies have spread like wildfire across the media throughout the United States and the world..."
The lawsuit could be complicated by the fact that O'Connor is a citizen of Ireland, but as it proceeds, it will likely examine whether O'Connor's statements were capable of defamatory meaning and whether she made them with reckless disregard of the truth.
Besides seeking at least $5 million in compensatory damages, the complaint also demands a punitive amount as a deterrence to others.