American News Apr 19, 2021 11:14 PM EST

James O’Keefe sues Twitter for defamation over ban from platform

"Twitter Knew Its Claim Was False and/or Recklessly Disregard the Truth.” The company told reporters that O'Keefe was operating fake accounts.

James O’Keefe sues Twitter for defamation over ban from platform
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Twitter permanently banned James O’Keefe of Project Veritas on April 15. He warned he was going to sue, and his team has now delivered on that promise as of Monday.

His legal complaint centers around defamation on Twitter's part for the statements given to the press in the aftermath of O'Keefe's ban.The press release notes the suspicious timing seeming to correlate with Project Veritas' bombshell leaks regarding Charlie Chester and CNN.

It screenshots this tweet from Justin Baragona of The Daily Beast.

“So it appears O'Keefe was involved in sock puppet accounts or something of that nature,” Baragona says in a follow-up.

Thus the incoming litigation. O'Keefe strongly opposes any such claim.

It was roughly two months ago that the official Project Veritas Twitter account was suspended on "posting private information" violations. This after the group released a video where they confronted Facebook Vice President Guy Rosen over leaked remarks from him about the platform "freezing" comment sections.

In the new lawsuit document published, O’ Keefe’s lawyers say:

“Initially, Twitter claimed Project Veritas’ suspension was just temporary – giving Project Veritas the option to delete the Guy Rosen video/tweet, or appeal Twitter’s decision that the tweet violated Twitter’s rules. When questioned by CNN, however, Twitter changed its story and made the suspension permanent, again claiming the Guy Rosen video/tweet violated “the platform’s policies prohibiting sharing — or threats of sharing — other people’s private information without consent.””

Adding to the confusion was the ban of a separate account, Project Veritas Action, even though it’s a legally separate entity.

On February 12th 2021 James O’Keefe’s personal Twitter account was reinstated by Twitter. He had publicly documented the restrictions placed on it as a result of the Rosen incident, his effort to appeal, then retracting said appeal to delete the tweet O’Keefe got locked out of.

He said at the time: "There's nothing in this tweet that violates anyone's privacy. I'm simply quoting a Facebook Vice President on a matter of utmost public concern, probably more of a newsworthy issue than the standard oil monopoly of a hundred years ago. But I'm going ahead and delete this against my own conscience so that I can utilize our Twitter account moving forward."

When it comes to Twitter’s accusation that O'Keefe was operating fake accounts, the legal documents say James O' Keefe and Project Veritas place the utmost importance on transparency throughout their work. As such, the public perceptions surrounding such a statement on Twitter's part may do reputational harm to the Veritas brand.

As such the prayer for relief requests: "For a permanent injunction enjoining Twitter, its officers, agents, servants, employees, and all other persons acting in concert or participation with Twitter from further dissemining the false, misleading, and defamatory representations of fact concerning Mr. O’Keefe discussed above, and requiring Twitter to remove such statements in all forums in which they are posted."

The lawsuit was filed to The Supreme Court of New York where both Twitter and Project Veritas have offices.

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