A Quebec Superior Court judge has ordered Google to pay $500,000 to a Montreal man after the tech company restored a link to an online post falsely accusing him of being a pedophile.
The man, whose identity is protected by a publication ban, first found the defamatory post in 2006 when he used Google to search his name.
While the man was able to have the link removed from search results that appear on Google’s Canadian site, the company later restored a link.
The man, who is described as a prominent businessman in court documents, argued the defamatory post damaged his career and personal relationships.
Google, which is headquartered in California, argued that Quebec defamation law didn’t apply to the case and that under U.S. law it had no obligation to remove the link.
Justice Azimuddin Hussain ruled late last month that Quebec law does apply and that while Google is not required to monitor what its search engine links to, it must act when it is informed that it is facilitating access to illicit content.