Netflix Sued for $170 Million by ‘Real-Life’ Baby Reindeer Stalker

Netflix Inc. faces a defamation lawsuit seeking at least $170 million from a woman who claims to be the inspiration behind a central character in the hit series Baby Reindeer.

Fiona Harvey sued the streaming service in a California court alleging the creators of the show exposed her identity and ruined her life “out of greed and lust for fame.” The program is said to be based on the real life of stand-up comedian Richard Gadd and his experience being stalked by a woman.

Netflix failed to verify lies told about her in the series, the lawyers said. There are “very serious misrepresentation of the facts” and details exposed in the series led social media users to identify her as the stalker, lawyers for Harvey said in the claim.

The portrayal of the character, named Martha, as a convicted stalker who sexually assaulted Gadd’s character, “viciously” destroyed her life, according to the claim.

Netflix used her “identity and likeness” for profits and resulted in “severe and extreme emotional distress,” Harvey’s lawyers said in the claim. They called for a trial by jury to recover more than $50 million in profit the show made for Netflix and over $120 million in damages.

Baby Reindeer has become a worldwide hit for Netflix — amassing 22 million viewers in just its third week on the site. Gadd’s spokesperson and Harvey’s lawyers didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.

“We intend to defend this matter vigorously and to stand by Richard Gadd’s right to tell his story,” Netflix said.