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Mirror cracks in apology in Jackson suit

Paper retracts 'scarred phantom' statement

LONDON — Michael Jackson has won an apology from the British tabloid newspaper the Mirror in his six-year libel battle to disprove allegations that his face was “disfigured and scarred” because of cosmetic surgery.

No damages are believed involved but it is probable that the Mirror will have to pay some legal costs.

To win the settlement, Jackson reportedly allowed himself to be examined without makeup for 40 minutes in a suite at the Universal Hilton in Los Angeles in the company of doctors and lawyers for both sides of the case.

In 1992, the Mirror published a photograph, it maintains was not tampered with, depicting a “scarred phantom whose face is covered with scar tissues, with a hole in his nose, one cheek higher than the other and an oddly sagging chin.”

A Mirror rep said: “The defendants regret the injury which has been done to the plaintiff’s reputation, and have agreed that they will not repeat these allegations.”