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CNN faces defamation lawsuit over debate moderator Jake Tapper’s fake news coverage

CNN is facing a defamation lawsuit over Jake Tapper’s coverage of President Biden’s Afghanistan withdrawal, a Florida Court of Appeal has ruled.

This development comes as Tapper is set to moderate the first 2024 Presidential debate, drawing increased scrutiny over his allegedly dishonest news coverage and repeated rebukes of former President Trump.

Background of the Lawsuit

The lawsuit stems from CNN’s 2021 coverage of the chaotic Afghanistan withdrawal, where the network accused Plaintiff Zachary Young of running a “black market” scheme and exploiting “desperate Afghans” for personal gain. Young, who was assisting in evacuating Afghans from Taliban control, argues that CNN’s portrayal harmed his security consulting company, Nemex Enterprises Inc.

Court’s Ruling

The First District Court of Appeal for the State of Florida ruled on 12th June that Young had provided sufficient evidence to move forward with his defamation suit for punitive damages. The court document stated that Young “sufficiently proffered evidence of actual malice, express malice, and a level of conduct outrageous enough” to warrant seeking punitive damages. The judges emphasised that the issue at hand was not whether Young could ultimately prevail but whether he had enough evidence to proceed.

Allegations Against CNN

Young, a U.S. Navy veteran, alleges that CNN “destroyed his reputation and business by branding him an illegal profiteer who exploited desperate Afghans” during a segment on “The Lead with Jake Tapper” aired on 11th November 2021. This segment was shared on social media and repackaged for CNN’s website, amplifying its reach and impact.

The court’s ruling highlighted internal CNN messages and emails expressing concern about the completeness and accuracy of the report, describing it as “a mess,” “incomplete,” and “full of holes like Swiss cheese.” Despite Young notifying CNN correspondent Alex Marquardt of factual inaccuracies hours before publication, the network proceeded with the story.


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Source: Leading Report

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Christian Njoku
Christian Njoku
Christian Njoku is a journalist with an eye for stories that foster growth and development. His wealth of experience cannot be compared to any other as he is always on top of stories that bring about positive change in society.

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