The winner of the Miss Dominican Republic beauty pageant has been forced to handover her crown because, it turns out, she is not a 'miss' at all. She is a 'Mrs.' Carlina Duran has been outed as a married woman, even though she has challenged the legitimacy of her nuptials and claims that she is in the process of having the marriage annulled.
During a press conference yesterday (April 25, 2012), Duran was forced to hand over her crown to the runner up, 24 year-old Dulcita Lieggi, though she maintains that it was an innocent mistake on her part that led to the misunderstanding regarding her eligibility for the contest, calling it "the fruit of my inexperience." Duran, aged 25, was accompanied by a lawyer, who spoke on her behalf, saying "In my daily life, I remained like a single woman, without thinking of myself neither materially nor spiritually married." She added that the marriage itself had been a brief one and that they had begun annulment procedures, though they didn't specify whether or not the annulment had been finalized.
Carlina hails from La Vega - around 95 miles north of the country's capital. She owns a spa in Santo Domingo and won the Miss Dominican Republic title on April 17, 2012, only to now have the title revoked. The newspaper Diario Libre reported on Tuesday (April 24, 2012) that they had evidence of a marriage license proving that she had wed on June 6, 2009. The rules of the pageant state that contestants must be single.