The German news magazine Der Spiegel announced on Saturday that it will file a lawsuit against former reporter Claas Relotius, who confessed to at least 14 articles he wrote for the respected publication, interviews and Gather facts. 19659004] In an unsigned article, the magazine reported that Relotius, a 33-year-old, had requested donations from readers for two Syrian orphans, which he investigated in July 2016. The article added that Relotius allegedly sent the worrying emails from a private account and requested that the donations be transferred to his personal bank account.
The mirror said it was not immediately clear how many people on Relotius would have asked to donate, how much money was matched, or what Relotius did with the funds.
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. The article focuses on two siblings, a 12-year-old boy named Ahmed and a 13-year-old girl named Alin. Relotius wrote that the parents of the siblings had died during the civil war in Syria, and the children had difficulty feeding on small-scale work in Turkey. According to Speigel, a Turkish photographer who briefly accompanied Relotius on the assignment claimed that the journalist had forged parts of the boy's biography and falsely claimed that the boy's mother was dead.
Der Spiegel further said the character by Alin – who has worked in a sweatshop for 14 hours in Relotius & # 39; stories – may not exist at all. The magazine noted that Ahmed did not have a sister to whom Relotious's description referred, and the photographer never met the girl.
The Speigel has now attached a copy to the story, as stated in all Relotius reports. "There is strong suspicion that Claas Relotius' reporting included factories and manipulations.
" THE MIRROR conducts an investigation of all evidence and information through and keeping all the articles in their current state in the archive until the allegations are clear to a large extent, also to allow for transparency in this research, "it says in the message, which closes with a request for more information, Relotius wrote nearly 60 articles for publication before being released last week.
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On Friday, the US ambassador to Germany called Richard Grenell to an independent investigation by Relotius, who wrote several of his articles on Amerik Grenell also accused the magazine of an anti-American bias, a charge dismissed by the magazine.
"We apologize to any American citizens who have been insulted or vilified by these articles, and we are very sorry that should never have happened," Deputy Editor-in-Chief Dirk Kurbjuweit wrote to Grenell on Sunday. However, the editor added: "If we criticize the American president, this is not an anti-American bias – it is criticizing the policies of the current White House man – anti-Americanism is deeply alien to me, and I am fully aware of what Germany is for THE MIRROR Harbors No Institutional Prejudices Against The United States. "
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" A Reporter could publish for years anti-American propaganda without editor or fact-checker?! " Grenell tweeted on Sunday. "It's absurd to pretend that it's just a reporter."
The Associated Press contributed to this report.