Judge holds Alex Jones in contempt of court for refusing to appear for Sandy Hook statements

Supreme Court Justice Barbara Bellis announced her decision during a hearing Wednesday, saying Jones “willfully failed to comply with the court’s orders” and there is no adequate explanation as to why he failed to order her to sit for a statement. followed.

“The court finds with clear and convincing evidence that the defendant Alex Jones willfully and in bad faith violated several clear-cut court orders requiring him to be present at his statements on March 23 and 24,” Bellis said.

Until he sits down for a statement, Bellis ordered, Jones will have to pay fines starting April 1 at $25,000 a day and increasing by $25,000 each business day.

“Clearly… that the plaintiffs here simply want and are entitled to Mr Jones’ testimony and that Mr. Jones has continued to deliberately disregard court orders and attempt to manipulate the process,” Bellis said on Wednesday. † “While paying the fees and court costs will reimburse plaintiffs for costs incurred in obtaining Mr. Jones’s testimony, it is not a substitute for his testimony.”

Bellis had ordered Jones to sit in the case for two days last week for a statement, but Jones did not appear. Last Thursday, Jones’ attorney Kevin Smith told CNN that Jones “followed his doctor’s advice” not to leave the house and avoid stressful activities. Bellis had rejected a previous request by Jones to delay impeachment due to an undisclosed medical condition, saying that “the medical problems, while potentially serious, are not currently severe enough to either require his hospitalization or convince him to leave.” to stop its broadcasts.”

At the same time that Jones’ attorneys argued in a hearing last week that their client was not well enough to give a statement and was on a doctor’s order not to leave his home, he gave up a live show on his Infowars website. a studio away from home, his lawyers confirmed in a court filing.

During Wednesday’s discussions about what sanctions, if any, should be imposed on Jones, another of his attorneys, Cameron Atkinson, said that Jones has already made multiple statements in other Sandy Hook cases, and that Jones “never sought his indefinite resignation.” delay time.” depositions.” Atkinson opposed issuing a warrant for Jones’ arrest, saying it would exacerbate his health problems, saying that escalating fines are “sufficient to effect Mr. Jones’ presence.”

Christopher Mattei, an attorney representing the Sandy Hook families, argued at the hearing that Jones should be incarcerated until he is impeached to show that the penalties for failing to comply with the court’s orders “are not worth it.”

“It appears to us that Mr. Jones has made an informed decision that he would rather face the contempt of court rather than expose himself to impeachment,” Mattei said.

Mattei declined to comment further on Bellis’s statement. Although she has not ordered his arrest, Bellis said the plaintiffs can apply for an arrest warrant for Jones in Texas courts.

Attorneys for the Sandy Hook families were preparing to impeach Jones as part of a lawsuit originally filed in 2018 after he repeatedly hoaxed the 2015 Sandy Hook shooting that killed 20 children and six adults. performed by crisis actors. Jones has since admitted in another statement that the shooting was real.

Bellis said the contempt “will be cleared” if and when Jones completes two full days’ worth of statements at plaintiffs’ law firms in Connecticut by April 15, and that he can also request a refund of the fines he incurs.

Aktinson asked the law firm to change its Covid-19 protocols for Jones, which he said would include wearing a mask, “something Jones is not willing to do”.

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