Sir Elton John and David Furnish have accepted “significant” libel damages from The Sun On Sunday over a report that claimed their dog inflicted “Freddy Krueger-like” injuries on a child.
The couple did not appear at London’s High Court as a decision was made on Friday.
They brought proceedings against News Group Newspapers (NGN) over the front page story, which appeared in The Sun on Sunday in February.
Their solicitor, Jenny Afia, told Mr Justice Nicklin that the item, captioned “Elton’s Dog Did This To My Girl”, also appeared on the Sun’s website and was picked up by a number of other publishers including the Mail Online, the Metro, the Mirror and the Evening Standard.
She said: “The story described an incident at the claimants’ home at which a young child at a play date had been subjected to a serious attack by their dog, which left her with ‘Freddy Krueger-like injuries’ and that, despite being aware of the incident, the claimants failed to make any attempt to find out how the little girl was.
“This allegation is false,” she said.
“The truth is that the injuries were not serious, and the claimants, far from ignoring the incident, made several inquiries about the girl’s welfare to her father and nanny.
“Each time it was confirmed the girl was fine.”
She added: “I am pleased to say that the newspaper has now accepted unequivocally that this allegation was false and seriously defamatory.
“As a result, it has agreed now to apologise to Sir Elton John and David Furnish, and to pay significant damages as well as to reimburse their legal costs.”
NGN’s solicitor, Jeffrey Smele, said: “The defendant offers its apology to the claimants, and is pleased that the matter has been amicably resolved.”