little green footballs

Gawker Fires Back at Chuck C. Johnson, Moves to Dismiss, Files Anti-SLAPP, Asks for Legal Fees

Mon, Aug 24, 2015 at 5:28:55 pm

Gawker's top-flight law firms fired back today at cyberstalker Chuck C. Johnson's absurdly frivolous defamation lawsuit, filing an anti-SLAPP motion (SLAPP = Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation) and a motion to dismiss the case entirely, and seeking to recover legal fees and court costs. (Thanks to @adamsteinbaugh for bringing it to my attention.)

I'm no lawyer so I don't know how this will go, but there are two possibilities: 1) the case will be transferred, probably to California, (because filing it in Missouri is an obvious ploy to avoid California's anti-SLAPP laws) and a court will rule on the anti-SLAPP motion, or 2) the case will be dismissed outright.

If it goes to California Gawker's almost certainly going to win easily, because California's anti-SLAPP statutes are designed to prevent exactly these kinds of suits, and they're some of the strongest of their kind in the country.

Gawker's legal team obviously spent quite a bit of time on these filings, so if/when Chuck is put on the hook for their costs it's going to hurt. And the filings are ... well, they're things of beauty. So without further ado, here they are. Enjoy. I know I did.

(Perhaps my favorite part: Gawker's lawyers actually used one of Chuck's biggest boosters against him: the Daily Caller's Betsy Rothstein. Beauty.)

The Anti-SLAPP motion:

The motion to dismiss: