The founder and editor of the neo-Nazi website The Daily Stormer should be ordered to pay more than $ 14 million to a real estate agent in Montana against whom he allegedly organized an anti-Semitic "troll storm", which he Federal Magistrate discovered Monday.
The judgment was delivered Monday in Missoula, Montana, US court against Andrew Anglin, who had encouraged the online bullying campaign against Tanya Gersh, a Jewish real estate agent in the Whitefish resort, in New York. Montana, her husband and their 12 years. son.
In an opinion yet to be approved by US District Judge Dana L. Christensen, the magistrate, Jeremiah C. Lynch, recommended a default judgment against Anglin, who did not appear for a testimony in April.
But Lynch went further than concluding for Gersh for procedural reasons: he recommended that Christensen order Anglin, who is in his thirties, to pay $ 4,042,438 in compensatory damages and 10 Millions of dollars, the maximum under state law, as punitive damages for "the particular, egregious and reprehensible character of the conduct of Anglin".
Noting that "the atrocious conduct against Gersh and his family has not completely disappeared," Lynch also recommended a permanent injunction ordering Anglin to remove from the "Daily Stormer" any material relating to Gersh and his family. Monday night, the materials had not been removed.
In 2016, under the signature of Anglin, the Daily Stormer, considered extreme even by other white and neo-Nazi nationalist organizations, appealed for a "troll storm". 39 "old" against the Gershs. The site alleged that Gersh had conducted a harassment campaign against the mother of Richard Spencer, the white supremacist who had coined the term "alt right", residing in Whitefish.
Spencer, an admirer of George Lincoln Rockwell, founder of the American Nazi party, was widely denounced for urging his supporters to "party like in 1933" – the year Adolf Hitler came to power in Germany – after the election of President Donald Trump November 2016. He was then one of the guest speakers at the Unite the Right rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, where a civil rights activist was killed and 19 other people were injured in August 2017.
In a December 2016 article that published Gersh's phone number and home address, as well as the Twitter address of his 12-year-old son, Anglin wrote about the Gershs: "Tell them that you are disgusted by their Jewish program.It is very important.It is very easy to call these people and / or send them a quick message. "
With the support of the Southern Poverty Law Center, a non-profit civil rights advocacy group, Gersh sued Anglin under Montana's anti-bullying law in April 2017, claiming that she and her family had been subject to hundreds of threatening and anti-Semitic hate messages.
Anglin refused to appear for a statement in April and his lawyers withdrew from the case. His current lawyers, if he has any, are unknown.
"A clear message has been sent to Anglin and other extremists: no one should be terrorized just to be what it is, and no one should ever be afraid of being what it is. it is, "Gersh said in a statement released Monday.
"This trial has always been aimed at preventing others from enduring the terror that I continue to live in the hands of a neo-Nazi and his supporters, and I wanted to make sure that this did not happen. will happen again, "she said.
John Morrison, a Gersh lawyer, said, "This is a great win for our client, but it also sends an important message: hateful harassment by bigots will not be tolerated in Big Sky Country."
Anglin went into hiding and could not be reached for comment on Monday. Last month, Anglin was sentenced to pay $ 4.1 million after failing to respond to a similar libel suit filed by Muslim and comic radio host Dean Obeidallah.