‘Poetic justice’: Twitter celebrates as right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones found liable for Sandy Hook defamation

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‘Poetic justice’: Twitter celebrates as right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones found liable for Sandy Hook defamation
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Twitter users have reacted with jubilation to the news that far-right conspiracy theory peddler Alex Jones has been found liable for defaming the families of school shooting victims.

Mr Jones, whose online media outlet Infowars has been spreading hoaxes and extremist fantasies since 1999, had claimed for years that the Sandy Hook shooting in Connecticut in 2012 was a "false flag" operation by the US government and that its victims were "crisis actors".

But on Monday, a Connecticut judge found him liable by default in four defamation cases brought by Sandy Hook families after he failed to produce any evidence for his claims.

Celebration on Twitter was immediate, with many opponents of Mr Jones describing the ruling as "justice" and a victory for truth.

"Resounding, long-awaited justice for the brave Sandy Hook families against brazen harm," wrote Senator Richard Blumenthal, a Democrat representing Connecticut.

California congressman Eric Swalwell also trumpeted the decision, saying: "Propagandist Alex Jones found liable for his vicious lies... happy Monday, America!"

The left-wing advertising pressure group Sleeping Giants called it "a banner day for us", while Tristan Snell, a former New York prosecutor who led the state’s case against Trump University, said the case "shows that you can’t just ignore the justice system and think you’re above the law".

Children’s author Anne Wheaton, who is married to Star Trek actor Wil Wheaton, said: "Finally, a horrible person who has to face the consequences of his actions. What a relief for the families he negatively impacted."

Others branded it "poetic justice", "catharsis" and "finally some accountability". Democratic activist Majid Padellan, known as Brooklyn Dad Defiant, declared: "May they take him for everything."

Alex Jones has been a mainstay of online conspiracism for many years, shifting from a leading promoter of claims that 9/11 was an "inside job" to a pro-Trump agitator who told Stop the Steal protesters to prepare for "war" in the months before the storming of the US capitol.

Mr Jones himself was not impressed, telling his audience: "It’s all a fraud, ladies and gentlemen. We hardly ever even talked about Sandy Hook... this is modern warfare we’re under."

The parody North Korean news agency DPRK News Service also affected disgruntlement, saying: "Fascist judge’s ruling against Alex Jones leaves DPRK News Service and Michael Cernovich the last truthful news reporters in the English language."

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