Aeroflot loses defamation dispute against trade union boss
MOSCOW, November 20 - RAPSI. On Monday the Moscow Commercial Court dismissed the defamation lawsuit by Russia's major airline Aeroflot against Sheremetyevo airport Trade Union President Igor Deldyuzhov, the court told the Russian Legal Information Agency (RAPSI/rapsinews.com).
The lawsuit concerned an article published in Izvestia daily in February which alleged that Aeroflot pilots fall asleep on the job because they are forced to work long hours.
The article cited Deldyuzhov's words on the matter. Izvestia was involved as a third party to the case.
The airline believes that the information stated in the article was false and caused damage to its reputation.
Initially, the airline also sought to have the defendant refute the information on the newspaper's website, but it retracted the claim at the end of the hearing. The court ceased the trial at the airline's request.
Aeroflot previously tried to sue Izvestia. The plaintiff demanded that the paper retract the allegation and pay 5 million rubles ($159,400) in moral damages, but the Moscow Commercial Court held against Aeroflot's claims in June.
Judge Nikolai Tarasov stated in the ruling that the plaintiff produced no substantial evidence that the statements in the article's headline and text were inaccurate.
The appeals court then upheld the decision in September.
On December 6, the Moscow District Federal Commercial Court will hear Aeroflot's appeal against the dismissal of its defamation lawsuit against the Izvestia newspaper.
Aeroflot is a member of the SkyTeam air alliance. It is based at the Sheremetyevo International Airport. The Federal Agency for State Property Management is Aeroflot's primary shareholder, holding a 51.17 percent stake in the company. Aeroflot flies to 898 destinations in 169 countries.