Attention tabloids: if you spread lies about Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel's marriage, they will sue you. There will be no revenge-fueled song performed on Timberlake's next tour to get back at you, or some heated comments made to the press in your direction. Do not pass go. Do not collect $200. You'll just get straight up sued, and you will lose. This is exactly what happened to Irish gossip rag Heat Magazine, whose publisher, Bauer Media Group, lost in a lawsuit on Tuesday filed by the Timberlake and Biel in response to Heat's choice to run a story and some photos that claimed Timberlake had been unfaithful to his wife after one of his performances in Paris. Yikes.
A court statement from a very regretful Bauer Media Group reads:
The article was based on an unfounded report regarding Justin Timberlake’s alleged behavior at a club following a performance in Paris, to celebrate a birthday and also included a number of purported statements improperly attributed to Jessica Biel, which Heat now understands had never been made by her. The Defendant regrets any embarrassment caused to the couple and unreservedly apologizes to them.
The story didn't make any waves over here, but it must have made quite the stir when it hit UK newsstands in September with headlines like, "Justin Timberlake Gets Flirty With Another Woman, It’s Not His Wife!” and "The Flirty Photos That Rocked Justin and Jessica’s Marriage."
After seeing the photos, it's suddenly very obvious why the 20/20 Experience singer wanted them taken down — amidst potentially damaging divorce rumors that won't quit circling the pair, he's looking very cozy with someone who is most definitely not Jessica Biel. Regardless, the couple's reps told JustJared.com,
Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel are very satisfied with this categoric retraction of what was a false and unfounded story, together with the comprehensive apology from Bauer Consumer Media, the publishers of Heat Magazine, as read before the High Court this morning. The couple will not be making any further comment in relation to this matter, but will not hesitate to take similar legal action if false allegations regarding the state of their marriage are repeated.
Even if their relationship is hitting a rough spot, Timberlake and Biel went on that cute hike in New Zealand the other day, which probably cleared their heads of all this stuff (and they also probably just laughed about how good looking and talented they are while on top of a mountain, gazing down at all of us peasants, but who knows). Congrats on winning the lawsuit, guys! That'll teach'em.