Alex Jones seeks new trial after Sandy Hook verdict of almost $1 billion
For more than two decades, Alex Jones’ Infowars TV show has been the most popular conspiracy theorist-based radio show in the United States.
His show, which first aired in 1995, has attracted a loyal audience, and made major contributions to the development of how Americans hear about conspiracy theories. He has spoken to Congress about the Sandy Hook school shooting, and testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee about the Sandy Hook massacre. His show, hosted by Jones, has also had a significant impact on the way Americans have been exposed to conspiracy theories at both the mainstream and alternative media.
But the Sandy Hook verdict of $1.2bn dollars in damages against Mr. Jones and/or Infowars last year has made some of his devoted supporters question whether they can continue with that relationship.
He has been charged with two felonies, but he has been free since he was arrested last week in the Virginia suburbs of Washington. Because of his status as a public figure, the case has created considerable debate about the First Amendment and the role of the press in American politics.
Infowars itself has said that it will fight the lawsuit, which it describes as a political attack for which the judge had no jurisdiction.
Infowars has repeatedly claimed that the Sandy Hook case is a hoax, and a deliberate attempt by the government to suppress independent media.
The Virginia criminal complaint against Jones and Infowars, filed in August 2012 and unsealed recently, said that the three entities named in the case had been trying to prevent the Infowars channel from airing the Sandy Hook evidence and facts.
The two infowares, “conspiracy theorist” and “Sandy Hook hoax”, were the two specific entities named. The government said that in March 2013, the Infowars channel started a “series of coordinated attempts to have independent media organizations and public figures removed from Infowars’ search results, in violation of the First Amendment.”
The Infowars TV show, according to the complaint, has “exposed numerous and substantial errors” about 9/11 and Sandy Hook. Those who have complained have been threatened with lawsuits.
“Jones has taken advantage of his stature as a national spokesman for the free speech advocacy group to promote and spread false information about Sandy Hook