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Victory for 'too fat' beauty queen

Pageant officials have breached their contract with a 17-year-old US beauty queen who was allegedly told to "get off the tacos" and stripped of her crown, a jury in Texas has ruled.

Lawyer Luis Vera said Domonique Ramirez won her case against the Miss San Antonio pageant.

Jurors deliberated for 11-and-a-half hours over two days before reaching a verdict in favour of the teenager, who was fired in January over allegations of weight gain and bad behaviour.

Pageant officials testified during the week-long trial that Domonique turned up to a bikini photoshoot overweight and made the pictures "unusable".

They said the 5ft 8in, 9 stone 3lb teenager was unreliable, chronically showing up late for events such as grocery store openings, and violated her contract in ways ranging from not writing thank-you notes to ignoring a physical fitness programme and vocal lessons.

It all added up to insubordination and breach of contract, they said.

Domonique denied gaining weight or being late.

After the verdict, pageant attorney Ben Wallis told the San Antonio Express-News newspaper that the decision would cause confusion and that the Miss Texas pageant could refuse to invite Domonique. He declined to say if the pageant would appeal, only saying that the pageant has "contingency plans."

There was no immediate word on what would become of Ashley Dixon, Domonique's runner-up who was crowned Miss San Antonio in a courtroom last month after a judge refused Domonique's efforts to obtain a temporary injunction stopping the pageant from naming a new winner.

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