Tony Parker has sued a celebrity gossip Web site that was publishing stories that claimed he had an affair with a French model.
The San Antonio Spurs star sued X17online.com on Wednesday in Superior Court, alleging it posted a series of “false and defamatory” stories claiming Parker cheated on his wife, actress Eva Longoria. He’s seeking at least $40 million in damages.
“This is false. It never happened. And X17 had to know that the story was false, or, at the very least, it had to have entertained serious doubts about the credibility of its supposed source,” the lawsuit said.
The lawsuit also alleged that X17 never contacted Parker, Longoria or their representatives before running the stories, and refused to retract them after being told the claims were false.
An after-hour call to X17’s Beverly Hills office was not immediately returned.
Last week, the Web site posted a story that said the model Alexandra Paressant told X17 that she had a two-month affair with Parker. The story said Paressant told X17 she attended Parker’s wedding last summer, where the French soccer star Thierry Henry introduced her to the basketball star.
“No one from X17 attempted to contact Mr. Henry, who … would have told them in no uncertain terms that this woman was not at the wedding,” the lawsuit said, adding that Parker has never met anyone named Alexandra Paressant.
“If this woman exists, he has no way of knowing whether she is one of the many fans who have, from time to time, managed to obtain his cell phone number and called or left messages or who may have engaged him in conversation.”
Parker is seeking damages for defamation and invasion of privacy. The lawsuit seeks a court injunction ordering X17 to stop publishing the stories.
Parker and Longoria defended their marriage last week.
“I love my wife,” Parker said in a statement from Longoria’s spokeswoman, Liza Anderson. “She’s the best thing in my life, and I have never been happier.”
“Tony has been nothing short of the perfect husband,” said Longoria, who stars on ABC’s “Desperate Housewives.”