Belfast Telegraph

Supermodel's evidence 'own goal'

Naomi Campbell's evidence was a "spectacular own goal" in the prosecution of former warlord Charles Taylor, the defence has said.

The 40-year-old supermodel admitted receiving a gift of diamonds in the middle of the night but - crucially - she said not know who it was from.

Naomi said the two men who came to her room handed over a pouch containing the "dirty pebbles" but offered no explanation other than it was a present.

"Our view is that the prosecution scored a spectacular own goal by calling Naomi Campbell," Courtenay Griffiths QC, defending, said after the hearing.

"The most damaging event is the failure of Naomi Campbell to say that the men who came to her there and gave her the diamonds or pebbles came from Charles Taylor.

"It's the purest speculation. This is a court of law, you don't deal with speculation, you deal with proof."

Mr Griffiths questioned the model over accounts given to the court by two other witnesses, the actress Mia Farrow, and Campbell's former agent Carole White.

He pointed out that White has launched a legal action against Campbell for breach of contract, and that Farrow only submitted her evidence to the court two weeks after the legal suit was filed.

In a written statement, Mia said the catwalk star told an "unforgettable story" about the diamond encounter at breakfast the morning after the party. But Naomi told Mr Griffiths she did not say diamonds were from Taylor, because she did not know that they were.

She also denied White's account of what happened after dinner. Her former representative said Campbell was "disappointed" to receive "six small pebbles" because she was expecting something shiny, but the model denied this was true.

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