Baby Reindeer: Netflix Hit With $120M Defamation Lawsuit From Woman Claiming to Be Real-Life Martha

The surprise Netflix hit Baby Reindeer claims to be “a true story,” and we may be about to find out how true it is.

The streamer has been sued for at least $120 million by Fiona Harvey, a Scottish lawyer who claims to be the inspiration for the Baby Reindeer character Martha, per The Hollywood Reporter. Harvey accuses Netflix of defamation, negligence and violating her right to privacy because the show depicts “Martha” as a deranged stalker who commits sexual assault and has spent time in prison for harassment.

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Richard Gadd wrote and stars in Baby Reindeer as stand-up comic Donny Dunn, who gets entangled with a woman named Martha and ends up suffering through years of stalking, harassment and threats from her, including tens of thousands of emails and hundreds of hours of voicemails. Gadd has said the series is based on his real life, but never identified who the real “Martha” was. Harvey has since surfaced to take issue with the depiction, most notably in an interview on Piers Morgan Uncensored.

Harvey alleges in her complaint that Netflix “did literally nothing” to confirm Gadd’s story, “never investigated whether Harvey was convicted” and “did nothing to determine whether other facts, including an assault, the alleged stalking or the conviction was accurate.” Netflix “told these lies, and never stopped, because it was a better story than the truth, and better stories made money,” she added.

A Netflix spokesperson provided the following statement to TVLine: “We intend to defend this matter vigorously and to stand by Richard Gadd’s right to tell his story.”

Previously, the streamer’s Senior Director of Public Policy for UK and Ireland said, “We did take every reasonable precaution in disguising the real-life identities of the people involved in that story… whilst also striking a balance with veracity and authenticity of Richard’s story, because we didn’t want to anonymize that and make it generic to the point where it no longer was his story.”

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