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Libel Claim Survives

(CN) - An international cargo shipper can seek libel damages after he was called a cheater and a thief by two men who tried to persuade the Department of Transportation to deny him a shipping permit, the New York Appellate Division ruled.

Nohar Singh, president of Travelspan, applied to transport passengers, cargo, and mail between the United States and the South American nation of Guyana.

Frank Singh wrote to the DOT to object, stating that Singh had "hoodwinked and robbed honest and simple people."

Also, Buddy Ramsaran claimed that Singh's previous charter service "became defunct ... by his misappropriation of funds that resulted in a tremendous loss to investors."

The DOT ultimately approved Nohar Singh's application, and he sued his two detractors for libel. Judge Chambers agreed with the trial court that the libel case should not be dismissed.

"The plaintiff alleged malice and ... that the applicants knew that portions of the statements made were false," the judge wrote.

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