RHOC's Shannon Beador Wins Defamation Case Against Jim Bellino: 'Grateful and Relieved'

Shannon Beador has officially won her case against Jim Bellino, who sued both her and former Real Housewives of Orange County star Tamra Judge for defamation in 2018.

In addition to having Bellino's case dismissed, Beador was awarded $137,340.25 of the $220,000 she sought for her legal fees.

"I am grateful and relieved because this has taken an emotional and financial toll on my family," Beador, 56, tells PEOPLE.

Bellino's lawyer did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request for comment.

Bellino, the ex-husband of former RHOC cast member Alexis Bellino, initially sued Beador and Judge, 53, for supposed negative comments they made about him and his former trampoline park business during a taping of Heather McDonald's Juicy Scoop podcast, which he claimed cost him over $1 million in potential business.

According to court documents obtained by PEOPLE, Judge discussed the Bellinos' divorce at the 2018 podcast taping, saying, "I have a theory. Everything, everything's in her name. He's going to go to jail. Yeah, he's a shady motherf—er."

McDonald then asked, "Do they still have the trampoline parks? Does anyone know?" to which Beador said, "No. No. I heard that they don't … I heard they don't because they were sued."

"I won't let my kids go because people get paralyzed… apparently that happens," she added.

The claim was made "in front of 300 people" in the crowd, Bellino later wrote on his website. After publishing it, MacDonald eventually cut the audio out of her podcast for listeners.

In January 2019, a judge dismissed Bellino's suit against Beador and ordered him to pay her for her legal fees, but Bellino later appealed that decision.

Alexis Bellino 'Didn't Think Divorce Was Going to be an Option'

Now, his appeal has also been dismissed on the grounds that Beador's statements are considered "protected speech" and that Bellino did not submit sufficient evidence of damages.

"The court explained the statements did not 'clearly convey a meaning' which 'tends to directly injure,'" the documents state. "The court also stated Plaintiffs failed to submit 'competent evidence of special damages.'"

The fate of Bellino's case against Judge is not clear, though she opened up about the legal battle during an episode of RHOC in December 2019.

At the time, Judge asked castmate Gina Kirschenheiter, "Do you know what I'm going through? Do you know? Is somebody taking over $300,000 from your f—ing bank account? Is somebody taking that from you?"

Adding to Judge's frustration was the fact that costar Kelly Dodd had been contacting Bellino, offering to be subpoenaed as a character witness in his case. Dodd later apologized to Judge, confessing that she was just trying to hurt her. And while Judge accepted the apology, she was still at her wits end.

"Kelly can f— off. I could have put all my kids through college with the amount of money I paid for that lawsuit," Judge said. "She knew that it was so devastating, but she still reached out and said, 'Hey, let me help you.' F— her!"

"Kelly keeps saying that she intended to hurt Tamra. But what Kelly needs to continually understand is that hurting Tamra also hurt Shannon," Beador added. "We both are in a lawsuit. We both have suffered so much financially. So immerse yourself in it. Does it make you feel good?"

"She crossed a line that I don't think that I get past because she knows and is aware of the hours that we cried," Beador continued. "Tamra's anger is completely justified. There is one person out of line here and that is Kelly Dodd. The nuke that she threw went too far."






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