defamation lawsuit

May 23, 2019 – FBI informant, Stefan Halper, is sued by Cambridge academic, Svetlana Lockhova, linked to Michael Flynn

Stefan Halper (l), Svetlana Lokhova (c) and Lt. General Michael Flynn (Credit: public domain)

“A Russian-British academic is suing FBI informant Stefan Halper for defamation over what she claims is a conspiracy to smear her and former national security adviser Michael Flynn through the media, according to a lawsuit filed Thursday.

The academic, Svetlana Lokhova, is also suing several news organizations she accuses of publishing false information provided by Halper, a former Cambridge professor.

“Stefan Halper is a ratfucker and a spy, who embroiled an innocent woman in a conspiracy to undo the 2016 Presidential election and topple the President of the United States of America,” Lokhova wrote in the lawsuit, which she filed in federal court in Virginia.

Lokhova asserts that Halper worked with the FBI and “political operatives” at Cambridge to seed stories about her interactions with Flynn at a dinner hosted at the storied British university on , when Flynn served as director of the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA).

The stories were planted, she claims, in order to “fuel and further the now debunked and dead narrative that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia.”

She claims that Halper, who served in four Republican administrations, spread false allegations and insinuations in the press and at Cambridge that she was a Russian agent who had attempted to recruit Flynn at the dinner. Stories that appeared in the press beginning in 2017 hinted that she used sex to lure the retired lieutenant general.” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 5/24/2019)

February 24, 2019 – Christopher Steele’s first defamation trial is slated in a London court this Fall

“Anti-Trump dossier creator Christopher Steele will face a London defamation trial later this year, one of two court cases in which he was forced to produce his first and only on-the-record statements on how he investigated and spread Democratic Party opposition research.

A lawyer involved in a lawsuit told The Washington Times that the London trial will start this fall, sometime between mid-October and mid-December.

Aleksej Gubarev (Credit: The Associated Press)

A half-dozen libel lawsuits have been filed against Mr. Steele and other dossier-related operatives. The one filed in London in 2017 by Russian entrepreneur Aleksej Gubarev would be the first to reach trial.

Mr. Steele is a key figure in promoting Trump-Russia conspiracy theories within the Obama administration and the news media. In his final of 17 dossier memos in December 2016, he accused Mr. Gubarev, a large supplier of computer servers, of hacking into Democratic Party computers under pressure from Russian intelligence. Mr. Gubarev, a resident of Cyprus, immediately denied the charge. There has been no evidence he did the intrusion.

Mr. Gubarev sued BuzzFeed in Florida for publishing the discredited 35-page dossier, which listed his name as a criminal hacker. A federal judge dismissed the case, but not because she ruled the charge was true. Rather, she ruled that BuzzFeed had a right to publish since the FBI was using Mr. Steele’s charges to investigate President Trump.

In Britain, libel laws don’t favor the press the way they do in the U.S.

Mr. Gubarev’s lawsuit has avoided the issue of dismissal because Mr. Steele’s defense isn’t that the dossier is true, said Val Gurvits, Mr. Gubarev’s U.S.-based attorney. Mr. Gubarev heads XBT Holdings, which includes the server provider Webzilla.

“They didn’t have a motion to dismiss,” Mr. Gurvits told The Times. “It doesn’t work that way in England. Because they did not allege truth as a defense, they did not have a right to file for summary judgment. That’s a huge issue, by the way, that most of the press conveniently ignored. Christopher Steele is not arguing that the allegations against Gubarev are true.”

Mr. Gurvits said the trial is slated to start between Oct. 21 and Dec. 18. (Read more: Washington Times, 2/24/2019)

December 19, 2018 – BuzzFeed wins lawsuit over Steele dossier

BuzzFeed Editor in Chief Ben Smith at a 2012 event with The Guardian. (Credit: Thos Robinson/Getty Images)

“A federal judge in Florida on Wednesday ruled in favor of BuzzFeed News in a defamation lawsuit over the outlet’s publication of the infamous and unverified Steele dossier.

The defamation lawsuit, filed Feb. 2, 2017, focused on allegations made in the final memo against Alexis Gubarev, a Russian tech executive with companies in Cyprus.

In a memo dated Dec. 13, 2016, Steele alleged Gubarev used his web hosting companies to hack into Democrats’ computer networks using viruses, bots and malware.

Gubarev vehemently denied the allegation, and after filing his lawsuit, BuzzFeed issued an apology and scrubbed his name from the version of the dossier published online.

Ben Smith, the editor of BuzzFeed, issued a statement claiming vindication in the case.

“As Judge Ungaro affirmed in her ruling, a key principle underlying the First Amendment is that the public has a right to know about actions taken by its government,” Smith said. “As we have said from the start, a document that had been circulating at the highest levels of government, under active investigation by the FBI, and briefed to two successive presidents, is clearly the subject of ‘official action.’” (Read more: The Daily Caller, 12/19/2018)

October 15, 2018 – Carter Page files a defamation lawsuit against the Democratic National Committee and Perkins Coie, which commissioned the infamous Clinton/DNC/Steele dossier

Marc Elias (Credit: Getty Images)

Onetime Trump campaign aide Carter Page filed a defamation lawsuit Monday against the Democratic National Committee and a law firm that represented them.

The lawsuit, which was filed in a federal Oklahoma court against the DNC, Perkins Coie, and Perkins Coie partners Marc Elias and Michael Sussmann, is about obtaining “justice,” Page said.

“It goes beyond any damages or any financial aspects,” Page told Fox News’ Sean Hannity Monday night. “There have been so many lies as you are alluding to, and you look at the damage it did to our democratic systems and institutions of government back in 2016. I’m just trying to get some justice in terms of getting some disclosure.”

Michael Sussmann (Credit: Perkins Coie)

Elias represented Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign, and hired Fusion GPS to conduct opposition research on Trump. Fusion GPS is the same firm that commissioned former British intelligence officer Christopher Steele who authored the so-called “Trump dossier” that contained scandalous and unverified claims about President Trump’s ties to Russia and was used by the FBI to help obtain the authority to spy on Page.

According to the dossier, Page was the Trump campaign’s intermediary to Russia and proposed disclosing stolen DNC emails via WikiLeaks, among other claims. Page has vehemently denied the allegations about him in the dossier.” (Read more: Washington Examiner, 10/15/2018)