"No one can be damaged by someone telling his own life story," she said.
After the "60 Minutes" and Krakauer reports last year, Penguin promised an internal investigation into the allegation that portions of the books were fabricated. Blewett referenced that investigation Wednesday. Herman declined to provide any updates, either during or after the hearing.
"The publisher knows only what the author has told it. That's it," Herman said.
One of the lawyers in the case is Larry Drury, who also represented plaintiffs in a class-action lawsuit against James Frey, who admitted on the "Oprah Winfrey Show" that he lied in his memoir "A Million Little Pieces." That lawsuit ended in a settlement that offered refunds to buyers of the book.
Drury and Blewett say the Mortenson and Frey cases "are stunningly close," but Haddon said he would not consider that case in these proceedings because it was settled without addressing any of the issues before him now.
Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.