A clown won a lawsuit against the South African edition of men's magazine FHM after the publication printed his picture with a report likening jesters to cross-dressing drug addicts.

FHM used in its December 2007 issue a stock image of Puddles the Clown alongside an article branding clowns "grown men with long-term tik (drug) habits, dressed like transvestites from hell".

A South African court found the magazine had used the picture "intentionally and maliciously", reported the Cape Times on Thursday.

It granted Puddles, whose real name is Norman Pudney, 60,000 rands ($6,000, 4,600 euro) in damages.

His lawyer argued the photo alone was not defamatory, but may have portrayed the children's performer in a bad light in the context.