Myskina loses lawsuit against photographer, magazine

Updated: July 19, 2005, 10:58 PM ET

NEW YORK -- Former French Open champion Anastasia Myskina can't stop a photographer from distributing topless pictures taken of her during a 2002 magazine photo session, a federal judge ruled Tuesday.

Myskina was 20 years old when the photographs were taken by Mark Seliger, according to a written decision by U.S. District Judge Michael Mukasey in Manhattan.

Mukasey wrote that the Russian star's rights were not violated when topless photographs were published with an article weeks after she won the French Open in 2004, despite her insistence that she did not understand a photo release form with her signature on it and was not fluent in English at the time.

"Absent allegations of fraud, duress or some other wrongdoing, Myskina's claimed misunderstanding of the release's terms does not excuse her from being bound on the contract," the judge wrote.

Myskina lawyer Alexander Berkovich said Tuesday he didn't know if he would appeal.

"Obviously, we're disappointed with the decision"' he said.

The topless photos were taken after Seliger photographed Myskina for the cover and interior of the Gentleman's Quarterly "Sports" issue in 2002 as part of a pictorial and profile of female tennis players.

Myskina said in court papers that the photographer had asked if he could take the pictures "for himself" and she said he could, as long as they were not published.

The lawsuit sought $8 million in damages from Seliger, GQ and its corporate parent, Conde Nast. A message left for a lawyer for the publications and the photographer was not immediately returned Tuesday.