Trump Media and Technology Group (TMTG), the parent company of former President Donald Trump’s Truth Social, has filed a defamation lawsuit against the Washington Post — and is seeking a jaw-dropping $3.78 billion.
The lawsuit, filed on Saturday in Florida, alleges that the newspaper has been running a “years-long crusade” against the social media platform and created an “existential threat for TMTG, causing enormous loss.”
The Washington Post is accused of acting “with actual malice and reckless disregard for the truth.”
“WaPo has been on a years-long crusade against TMTG characterized by the concealment of relevant information in its possession—a bitterly ironic truth for a publication whose motto is ‘Democracy Dies in Darkness,’” the court filing said, according to a report from Fox News.
The complaint heavily focuses on a May 2023 report headlined, “Trust linked to porn-friendly bank could gain a stake in Trump’s Truth Social.”
The report stated, “an obscure financial entity with connections to a Caribbean-island bank that bills itself as a top payment service for adult entertainment sites would gain a sizable stake in former president Donald Trump’s media company if its merger deal proceeds, according to internal documents a company whistleblower has shared with federal investigators and The Washington Post.”
According to the lawsuit, the article was based on information from former employee Will Wilkerson.
“Wilkerson knew that WaPo eagerly published false stories about TMTG, its CEO, Devin Nunes (‘Nunes’) and, of course, former President Donald Trump. Wilkerson contacted WaPo with a salacious story about a porn-friendly bank and securities fraud. Through a series of meetings and conversations with Wilkerson and his lawyers, WaPo undertook with Wilkerson to publish agreed false and defamatory statements to injure TMTG,” the court filing said.
“WaPo was not content with publication of the false Statements to its 2,500,000 subscribers and republication to its 20,000,000 Twitter followers. The primary author of the WaPo Article, Drew Harwell (‘Harwell’), republished the Article to his 48,000 Twitter followers, which included correspondents at CNN, New York Times, NBC News, The Atlantic, Huffington Post, the Daily Beast, Business Insider, and the Guardian,” the lawsuit continued.
Lawyers representing TMTG argued that the article left readers with the impression that company executives would go to prison.
“WaPo’s Statements were not published in good faith. The falsity of the Statements is not due to an honest mistake of the facts. There are no reasonable grounds for believing that the Statements are true. Publication of the Statements and republication of the Guardian article was part of a concerted effort to damage TMTG and interfere with its business,” the lawyers wrote in the filing.
A Washington Post spokesperson told Fox News that the newspaper would not comment on pending litigation.