Google told to pay $200,000

A MELBOURNE man who won a defamation case against search engine giant Google has been awarded $200,000 in damages.

Milorad ''Michael'' Trkulja sued over images of him alongside a well-known underworld figure that appeared in search results.

A six-person Supreme Court jury found last month that Mr Trkulja had been defamed by the images. He first contacted Google about removing the images in 2009.

The images were posted after Mr Trkulja was shot in the back by an unknown gunman while eating with his mother at a St Albans restaurant in June 2004.

When Mr Trkulja's name was typed into Google's image search, photos of him appeared alongside gangland figure Tony Mokbel. Google search results also linked to a page on a now defunct website, Melbourne Crime, which had published photos labelled with his name.

Mr Trkulja said he never initially intended to sue Google but was galvanised into action after his request for the content to be removed from its searches in 2009 was not granted.

Supreme Court Justice David Beach said in awarding the damages on Monday the case was about ''vindication and nailing the lie''.

Mr Trkulja, an elder at a Serbian Orthodox Church in Springvale, also won $225,000 in damages from Yahoo this year over the same matter.

Google's lawyers argued the search engine was not the publisher of the material.

The story Google told to pay $200,000 first appeared on The Sydney Morning Herald.

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