- (Photo: Reuters)
Ariel Winter's mom is suing an actor-associate of her eldest daughter for defamation, it was announced on Monday.
She claims that he defamed her when he called her an "abusive monster" in an online posting about the ongoing custody battle for the teenage actress and star of "Modern Family."
A lawsuit has been filed Monday by Chrisoula Workman claiming defamation against Matthew Borlenghi.
The suit claims that his posting on a Nov. 9 Los Angeles Times article labeling her an "abusive monster" were false and that they have damaged her reputation.
Borlenghi is an associate of Workman's older daughter, Shanelle Gray, and is an actor who operates a studio where he teaches. Gray currently has been granted custody of Ariel instead of her mom, Workman.
Workman was temporarily stripped of custody rights after allegations were made that she had physically and emotionally abused Ariel.
Wednesday will mark the opening of the trial to see if Workman's loss of custody will become permanent.
The controversial statement was allegedly made by Borlenghi, according to the lawsuit, and centered on an accusation that Winter was having improper relations with an 18 year old actor.
The post states: "This is a total falsehood. The mother is grasping and clawing to find a way not to lose her money-maker, and hide the fact that she is an abusive monster."
He said, "All I can say is that David (Gray) and Shanelle Gray are very close friends of mine and comments that Chris has made are absolutely fabricated. The negative comments she's made about her own daughter in order to try to get custody back of Ariel are truly disgusting," according to The Associated Press.
Workman has vehemently denied ever being abusive towards Winter, and her lawsuit contains several pages of sworn declarations by tutors and other friends denying the accusations that she is an abusive mother.
Winter is famous for playing Alex Dunphy on ABC's "Modern Family." She has also made appearances on "ER" and "Phineas and Ferb." Her film credits also include, "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang," and "Ice Age: The Meltdown."