US

Alex Jones charged with defamation in Sandy Hook ‘prank’ case

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(AP)

A Connecticut judge found Infowars host Alex Jones liable on Monday defaulting in a defamation lawsuit brought by the parents of children killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the case. opened fire because of the conspiracy theorist’s claims that the massacre was a hoax.

The decision by the judge, who cited Jones’ refusal to abide by court rulings or turn over evidence, means the jury will determine the amount of damages Jones must pay to the families.

Shortly after the judge’s decision, Jones continued his show and said he had been stripped of his right to a fair trial.

“These individuals, again, are not allowing me to have a jury trial because they know the things they said I allegedly did. [say] didn’t happen,” he said. “They know they have no claim for damages. And so the judge is saying you are guilty of damages, now the jury decides how guilty you are. It is not guilty until proven guilty”.

Judge Barbara Bellis took the rare step of giving a default ruling in the case because she said Jones and his companies, Infowars and Free Speech Systems, failed to turn over documents including the documents. records may have shown how and if, they profited from spreading misinformation about school shootings and other mass murders.

Norman Pattis, Jones’ attorney, said an appeal against Bellis’ default judgment was planned.

Pattis said in an email: “The judgment rendered is not based on law or fact. “We remain confident that in the end, the Sandy Hook family cannot prove liability or damage. We think their attorney knows this; so desperately trying to get a default. “

His attorneys asked Bellis to be dropped from the case, arguing that she had not been impartial.

The ruling has the same outcome as a jury determining the case in favor of the families. The jury will now determine damages.

Twenty first-graders and six educators were killed in a shooting in December 2012. Officials say the gunman, 20-year-old Adam Lanza, killed his mother at their Newtown home before There was a shooting and suicide at the school when the police arrived.

The shooting was portrayed on the show Jones’ Infowars as a hoax involving actors in an attempt to increase gun control. Jones has admitted the school shooting happened.

The families of the victims said they had suffered harassment and death threats from Jones’ followers because of the prank plot pushed to Infowars. They sued Jones and his companies for defamation and emotional distress. A pre-jury damages hearing is expected to be held next year.

“What is clear from Judge Bellis’ ruling is that Alex Jones and Jones’ defendants committed a protracted, ongoing misconduct in this case designed to prevent the plaintiffs from obtaining evidence of Jones’ business and about his motives for publishing the lies. about them and their families,” said Chrisstopher Mattei, an attorney for relatives of the eight victims who sued Jones in Connecticut.

Messages were left for the parents of some of the children killed in the shooting.

A Texas judge recently ruled similar against Jones in three defamation lawsuits brought by the Sandy Hook families in that state, arguing that Jones was liable for damages after alleging that he I and his companies did not turn over documents. A damages hearing has also been requested.

In one of the lawsuits, a Texas judge in 2019 ordered Jones to pay $100,000 in legal fees and refused to dismiss the case. And a Wisconsin jury awarded $450,000 to one of the parents in his case against conspiracy writers, not including Jones, who claimed the massacre never happened. out.

In three lawsuits in Connecticut, Jones was previously sanctioned for violating multiple turn-over orders and for an outburst of anger on his web against Mattei. A judge barred Jones from filing a motion to dismiss the case – a ruling that was upheld after being appealed to the US Supreme Court, which refused to hear Jones’ appeal in April.

https://www.winknews.com/2021/11/16/alex-jones-liable-for-defamation-in-sandy-hook-hoax-case/ Alex Jones charged with defamation in Sandy Hook ‘prank’ case

Aila Slisco

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