X Factor judge Louis Walsh settles defamation case

DUBLIN, Nov 28 (Reuters) - Television personality and pop

music producer Louis Walsh on Wednesday settled a 500,000 euro

($640,000) defamation case against News Group Newspapers in

Ireland.

The deal came after Walsh, best known for his role as a

judge on the hit television show "The X Factor", sued the group

for publishing a story last year based on false allegations that

he had groped a man in a Dublin night club.

Leonard Watters, who made the accusations before later

retracting them, was jailed for six months earlier this year.

Paul Tweed, Walsh's solicitor, said: "The publishers of the

Irish, UK and online editions of the Sun have this morning

unreservedly apologised to Louis Walsh.

"They have also agreed to pay very substantial damages of

500,000 euros together with his legal costs."

Walsh, who managed Irish boy bands Westlife and Boyzone,

said the story had a "terrible effect" on him.

"I'm very satisfied with this morning's total vindication

for me, but I remain very angry at the treatment I received at

the hands of the Sun," he said outside court.

"I have the utmost respect and time for most journalists

with whom I've always enjoyed a good relationship, and I'm

therefore absolutely gutted and traumatised that these

allegations should have been published

"I wouldn't wish this on my worst enemy."

The Sun said it apologised "unreservedly".

(Reporting by Sarah O'Connor)