Judge dismisses DNC hacking lawsuit against Trump campaign, WikiLeaks, and Russia

Another story the mainstream media isn’t reporting: a federal judge dismissed the Democratic National Committee (DNC) hacking lawsuit against the Trump campaign, WikiLeaks, and Russia.

Newsflash: no one on Trump’s campaign was involved in stealing material from the Democratic National Committee.

In an 81-page opinion, U.S. District Judge John Koeltl in New York said any actions by the individuals mentioned in the lawsuit were protected by the First Amendment. They include Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, his son Donald Trump Jr., campaign manager Paul Manafort, GOP operative Roger Stone, and WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange.

WikiLeaks, also named in the lawsuit, was also protected by the First Amendment the judge ruled because the organization did not steal the documents and only disseminated material that was in the public interest.

“In sum, the DNC does not allege any facts to show plausibly that any of the defendants, other than the Russian Federation, had any role in hacking the DNC’s computers or stealing its information — it attributes that conduct only to the Russian federation. And the DNC does not dispute that the documents were of public importance. Therefore, the First Amendment protects the publication of those stolen documents,” Koeltl wrote.

“In short, the DNC raises a number of connections and communications between the defendants and with people loosely connected to the Russian Federation, but at no point does the DNC allege any facts … to show that any of the defendants other than the Russian Federation — participated in the theft of the DNC’s information,” Koeltl said. “Nor does the DNC allege that the defendants ever agreed to help the Russian Federation steal the DNC’s documents.”

DNC spokeswoman Adrienne Watson said of Koeltl’s decision, “At first glance, this opinion raises serious concerns about our protections from foreign election interference and the theft of private property to advance the interests of our enemies.”

She added, “At a time when the Trump administration and Republican leaders in Congress are ignoring warnings from the president’s own intelligence officials about foreign interference in the 2020 election, this should be of concern to anyone who cares about our democracy and the sanctity of our elections.”

Koeltl was a Bill Clinton appointee.

WikiLeaks attorney Joshua Dratel told the Washington Post, he was “very gratified with the result, which reaffirms First Amendment principles that apply to journalists across the board, whether they work for large institutions or small independent operations.”

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