Project Veritas vows to appeal jury decision awarding damages to Democrat consulting firms
A jury on Thursday awarded $120,000 to Democracy Partnerships, targeted by the undercover investigative group.
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Project Veritas said late Thursday it will appeal a court decision in which the undercover investigative group was ordered to pay $120,000 in damages to Democratic consulting firms it targeted.
The announcement follows a federal court jury on Thursday afternoon awarding the money in connection with recordings made in 2016 by an operative associated with Project Veritas who obtained an internship using a false name and story.
The nine-member jury concluded that the actions of an operative breached a fiduciary duty to the consulting firm collective, Democracy Partnerships, and amounted to fraudulent misrepresentation, according to Politico.
Recordings made by operatives depicting what the group said were efforts to incite violence at rallies for then-President Trump.
A key figure behind the Democratic consultancies said the firms lost contracts after the release of the videos. He also denied encouraging violence during so-called bracketing efforts around Trump events, Politico also reports.
"The verdict represents a setback in journalistic integrity – effectively allowing subjects to dictate the way in which a journalist gathers and reports the news,” the group said in a release Thursday evening. "Project Veritas will appeal."
The release also states Project Veritas has refused to settle the roughly five-year-long case because "it has done nothing wrong."
"The jury effectively ruled investigative journalists owe a fiduciary duty to the subjects they are investigating and that investigative journalists may not deceive the subjects they are investigating," said Project Veritas founder and CEO James O’Keefe.
"Journalism is on trial, and Project Veritas will continue to fight for every journalist’s right to news gather, investigate, and expose wrongdoing – regardless of how powerful the investigated party may be."