April 22, 2024


  • Alex Jones could face perjury charges after his lawyer made a huge mistake, legal experts said.
  • An attorney for Jones accidentally sent a digital copy of Jones’ phone to opposing counsel.
  • Jones is now being sued for damages related to lies he spread about the Sandy Hook shooting.

Alex Jones’ legal prospects went from bad to very bad in court Wednesday after his attorney accidentally sent the entire contents of Jones’ phone to opposing counsel, inadvertently revealing text messages the InfoWars host had previously claimed did not exist. .

Jones is on trial in Texas after the parents of a boy killed in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting sued the conspiracy theorist for spreading falsehoods about the Newtown, Connecticut school shooting that left 20 children and six staff members dead in December 2012.

Jones already was was found liable for libel in the case and three other lawsuits in Texas and Connecticut over the depiction of the shooting. The civil trial is the first of three in which jurors must determine how much Jones must pay the victims’ families.

The digital copy of Jones’ phone shared with lawyers for the Sandy Hook parents included a text about the massacre that Jones previously claimed did not exist, as well as financial information about InfoWars that Jones did not turn over during the deposition.

The 11th-hour blunder, which lawyer Mark Bankston dramatically revealed in court on Wednesday, is almost certain to have an impact on jurors who begin deliberating damages in the case on Thursday.

“This is a bad day in court for Jones.” Matthew Barhoma, criminal appellate attorney and founder Attorneys at Law and Barhoma Law he told Insider. “It’s a bad reflection on his character and credibility which is especially on the line when you’re on the stand.”

Before deliberations begin, the jury is given a set of instructions advising that if they believe a person lied about something on the stand and the information was important, then they are free to disregard his or her entire testimony, Neama Rahmani, former federal prosecutor and its president West Coast Lawyers he said.

“If jurors believe Alex Jones lied about the texts, they’re free to reject everything he says, which is huge,” Rahmani said.

But Wednesday’s courtroom bombshell could also have far-reaching implications beyond the current court proceedings, legal experts said.

The possibility of perjury

Legal experts told Insider that Jones arguably opened himself up to potential perjury charges as a result of his attorney’s mistake. If Jones had lied about the existence of text messages referring to the shooting, the court would consider it perjury.

“This is a verification that you do under oath and if it turns out later, as happened here, it later turns out not to be true, that there are responsive text messages, there are responsive communications that should have been produced, that looks like bad faith, and that’s very applicable Barhoma said.

Such a crime could easily lead to criminal charges against Jones, Rahmani said.

“This is potentially a very big case,” the lawyer said. “And after all, if Alex Jones were to testify against himself, his legal problems are just beginning.”

Jones’ attorney was not immediately available for comment.

Prosecutors in Texas will ultimately make the final decision on whether or not Jones should be charged. If Travis County District Court Judge Maya Guerra Gamble — who admonished Jones several times during his deposition earlier this week — dismisses the case, prosecutors would be even more likely to pursue a criminal case again Jones, according to Rahmani.

“If the indictment is made, it is very likely that Alex Jones will be prosecuted,” the lawyer said. And even if he doesn’t, I think that’s such an outrageous lie that it’s a very easy perjury case that I would expect Texas prosecutors to take on.”

Alex Jones sits as barrister Mark Bankston questions him.

Mark Bankston, attorney for Neil Heslin and Scarlett Lewis, questions Alex Jones about the text messages during the trial in Travis County Court in Austin, Wednesday, Aug. 3, 2022.

Briana Sanchez/Austin American-Statesman via AP, Pool

Misdemeanor vs. Felony

The crime of perjury in Texas can either be classified as simple perjury – a misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in prison or aggravated perjury – a felony punishable by 2-10 years behind bars.

To be considered aggravated perjury, two elements must be present, Rahmani said: The perjury must take place during an official proceeding, such as a trial, and the perjury must be material, meaning that the false statement could reasonably to affect the outcome of the official proceeding.

Both elements of aggravated perjury, and the potential decade-long prison sentence that comes with it, appear likely to be met in this case, Rahmani said.

The mistake by Jones’ legal team set the internet ablaze Wednesday, but Rahmani said it’s a blunder he’s seen happen many times due to human error. He was even in such a mistake, he said.

“It happens when you send so many emails,” he said. “You communicate regularly with your opposing counsel. When you’re dealing with a lot of text messages, it just happens.”

Rahmani added that as long as Jones’ attorney did not know in advance that the text messages existed and calculated perjury by having Jones lie about their existence, he is unlikely to face legal consequences himself.


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