The Federal Court in the U.S. dismissed a $250 million lawsuit from a US state student from Kentucky Nicholas Sandmann against the Washington Post for defamation, which he filed after publishing an article stating that Sandmann allegedly provoked a quarrel with one of the protesters at a rally in Washington.
The incident happened on January 18 during a rally against abortion, in which Sandmann and his classmates took part. The photograph, published in the newspaper, showed how Sandmann wearing a cap with the inscription “Let’s make America great again” worn by supporters of US President Donald Trump stands face to face with American Indian Nathan Phillips singing and playing the tambourines. Sandmann’s aggressive treatment towards Phillips considering as racist behavior followed the photo caption.
Phillips stated that Sandmann and his mates shouted the phrase “Build a wall,” referring to the wall on the border with Mexico, which Trump plans to build. Sandmann himself denied all the accusations and stated that Phillips deliberately sang loudly and played the instrument next to him, and Phillips’s statements about shouting slogans by Sandmann and his friends were not credible and could not be heard on any video records.
Earlier, the statement of claim was reported to state that the newspaper defamed the schoolchild “in order to promote their well-known and easily provable policy against Donald Trump“, due to which Sandmann has become the object of harassment.
Nevertheless, Judge William Bertelsman rejected the student’s lawsuit, saying that the newspaper’s coverage of this incident was protected by freedom of speech. According to him, even if Phillips’s statements were inaccurate, the Washington Post had the right to publish it, as the newspaper cannot be judged for the inaccuracy of the information.
Earlier, Sandmann also filed a lawsuit of $275 million connected with this incident against the TV channel CNN.
“Show them Nick! Fake news,” Trump supported Sandmann in Twitter.
Natalia Veselnitskaya – official website