free speech

Infowars lawyer, manager barred from bankruptcy case over conflicts

Alex Jones attempts to answer questions about his emails asked by Mark Bankston, lawyer for Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, during trial at the Travis County Courthouse, Austin, Texas, U.S., August 3, 2022. Briana Sanchez/Pool via REUTERS

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(Reuters) – A U.S. bankruptcy judge on Tuesday blocked a restructuring executive and an attorney from working for Infowars’ bankrupt parent company over a conflict of interest, potentially throwing the bankruptcy case and the company’s daily operations into disarray.

U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Lopez in Houston found that Marc Schwartz, chief restructuring officer of Infowars parent Free Speech Systems LLC, and attorney Kyung Lee failed to disclose that they sought work from Free Speech Systems before the conclusion of earlier Infowars bankruptcies.

The judge raised the conflicts issue because he presided over the earlier Infowars bankruptcies and was concerned about the apparent overlap of work. The judge said the two men showed a “lack of candor” regarding the overlap and other matters. The judge also said the problem was compounded by Schwartz’s tendency to defer to Alex Jones and his other companies instead of advocating on behalf of FSS alone.

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Alex Jones using bankruptcy to avoid payouts, Sandy Hook families allege

Sandy Hook families have asked a federal judge to remove InfoWars founder Alex Jones from control of his main company, alleging that Jones has siphoned off millions of dollars and is abusing the bankruptcy system to avoid paying court judgments for portraying the 2012 school shooting as a hoax.

Jones placed Free Speech Systems into bankruptcy in late July while he was in the middle of an Austin trial that ended with jurors awarding almost $50 million to the parents of 6-year-old Jesse Lewis, one of 20 children and six educators killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

Sued by other Sandy Hook families, Jones and Free Speech Systems are facing a similar trial this month in Connecticut and another trial later this year in Austin.

With potentially large jury awards looming, bankruptcy proceedings for Free Speech Systems — which reported $9.4 million in profits on $14.3 million in income in the first five months of this year — could determine how much money the Sandy Hook families receive, as well as the continued viability of Jones’ Austin-based InfoWars media system.

Lawyers for the Sandy Hook parents recently told U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Christopher Lopez that they don’t trust

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Alex Jones company files for bankruptcy; Sandy Hook defamation trial expected to continue

AUSTIN, Texas – Free Speech Systems, the main company owned by Austin-based conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, has filed for bankruptcy – but a Jones lawyer said the action is not expected to affect a trial underway in Austin in a lawsuit by the parents of a child killed in the 2012 attack on Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Free Speech Systems, which operates Jones’ InfoWars media system, listed $14.3 million in assets, including almost $1.16 million in cash and almost $1.6 million in property and equipment, as of May 31.

But the Austin corporation’s bankruptcy filing also listed $79 million in liabilities, including a $54 million debt owed to PQPR Holdings.

Video: Sandy Hook conspiracist Alex Jones could owe $150 million in defamation case 

A separate lawsuit filed by two Sandy Hook families earlier this year in state court accused Jones of systematically hiding millions of dollars in assets and called the $54 million debt dubious, saying PQPR is a Nevada-registered company that is owned “directly or indirectly by Jones, his parents and his children through an alphabet soup of shell entities.” That lawsuit is still in the early stages.

Alex Jones walks into the courtroom in front of Scarlett

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Alex Jones’ company ‘fabricated’ debt, Sandy Hook families say

Sandy Hook families suing Alex Jones for damages after the Infowars host was held liable for defamation have accused him of playing a complex financial shell game in an attempt to avoid paying, according to a new objection they filed in federal bankruptcy court.

The families objected to Jones’ company’s request for the court to authorize the use of cash collateral to “pay reasonable and necessary operating expenses.”

The objection alleges that the debt is based on a “fabricated, allegedly secured loan from an affiliated, insider entity of the debtor, PQPR,” attorneys wrote in their objection filed Tuesday in U.S. Bankruptcy Court Southern District of Texas on behalf of the Sandy Hook families involved in the three defamation cases against Jones in Connecticut and Texas, as well as a Norwalk man he defamed over the Parkland, Fla. shooting.Last week, Jones sued his own company, Free Speech Systems, to be held harmless in any award, meaning that the company and not Jones would be liable for any damages.

An initial response filed by attorneys for the families, called the attempt a “fiction” in which “found facts and sworn testimony mean nothing at all.”

One day later, Free Speech Systems filed

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Sandy Hook Lawyers Rip Bankruptcy Bid By ‘Coward’ Alex Jones To Dodge Damages

Lawyers for Sandy Hook parents who successfully sued Donald Trump ally Alex Jones for his relentless lies about the mass killing are blasting him for now trying to use bankruptcy protection laws to dodge paying defamation damages.

“Just two days before jury selection is due to begin in Connecticut, Mr. Jones has once again fled like a coward to bankruptcy court in a transparent attempt to delay facing the families that he has spent years hurting,” Chris Matei, a lawyer for the families, said in a statement.

The extremist right-wing podcaster was found liable for defamation last year for repeatedly insisting that the 20 first-grade children (and six adults) killed in a mass shooting at Connecticut’s Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012 — and their devastated parents — were acting as part of a fake anti-gun stunt staged by the U.S. government.

On top of the excruciating tragedy, families were then forced to deal with harassment and death threats from Jones’ unleashed fans.

A trial to determine damages began last week in a defamation case in Texas, where Infowars is located, and another begins this week in Connecticut. Last Friday, Jones suddenly declared bankruptcy for Infowars’ parent company. He

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