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Prince Albert II of Monaco accepts damages in U.K. libel suit

Prince Albert II of Monaco has accepted an apology and damages from a British newspaper over an article suggesting his wife, Princess Charlene, was reluctant to marry him, lawyers said Tuesday.

The prince had launched libel action against the Sunday Times over a July 2011 article that suggested Charlene agreed to a sham marriage in exchange for payment, and that Albert had confiscated her passport to prevent her from fleeing Monaco so she would stay and marry him for appearance's sake.

The article -- headlined "The Full Filthy Monte" -- also alleged that Albert had turned a blind eye to corrupt activity and granted residence permits to foreigners for fear of having alleged secrets about his love life exposed.

The prince's lawyer, Mark Thomson, argued that the article's publication, two days after the royal couple's wedding, had upset and embarrassed them.

Thomson said the newspaper had confirmed that it would pay damages and legal fees to the couple. The exact settlement has yet to be agreed upon, according to the Guardian.

The paper's lawyer, Rupert Earle, apologized for the damage and distress caused in court on Tuesday.

"We accepted that these allegations were untrue and seriously defamatory," the newspaper's publisher, News International, said in a statement.