Restaurant Owner Marisol Simoes Found Guilty Of Libel After Posting Fake Sex Profile For Customer Who Wrote Negative Review
If you’ve ever written an unflattering review for a restaurant online, you’ve probably had a moment of nervousness before hitting “post,” weighing the possibility of an angry business owner blowing up your Facebook account against a feeling of personal responsibility to warn potential future customers of rude, slow service or rubbery mussels.
One Canadian diner found herself on not only the receiving end of a restaurant owner’s ire, but also a string of retaliatory actions online including emails with sexual content sent to her boss as well as explicit profiles posted to sex sites.
A court in Canada heard that Marisol Simoes, angry about restaurant-goer Elayna Katz’s unflattering review of restaurant Mambo Nueva Latino online, sent the explicit emails to Katz’s supervisor as well as posted the ads to sex sites on the web.
The Ottawa Citizen explains:
“Simoes pretended to be Katz in the messages which were repeatedly sent to the CEO and board of directors at the Federation of Canadian Municipalities where Katz works in human resources. The messages claimed Katz was a “tiger in the bedroom” and a transgender who liked threesomes and group sex.”
Amusingly, Simoes and her husband also own a restaurant called Kinki. After Simoes was found guilty, Katz says that she might not have posted the reviews had she known what would happen — but she also says that she feels reviewing a restaurant is not in and of itself an antagonizing thing to do:
“When you are in the business of owning a restaurant and serving the public, people have a right to express their opinion … There is no crime in that.”
Simoes is set to be sentenced on November 8th.