UNITED STATES: According to a court document, right-wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones filed for personal chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in Texas on Friday.
He is facing about $1.5 billion in court judgments related to conspiracies he peddled about the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting.
In addition to the almost $1 billion verdict awarded in October for his defamatory statements that the shooting was staged, Jones was also ordered by a Connecticut court last month to pay $473 million in punitive damages.
According to a court document, Jones requested chapter 11 protection from creditors at the Houston US bankruptcy court.
According to the statement, Jones has assets worth up to $10 million and liabilities worth up to $10 billion.
Additionally, it states that Free Speech Systems, a subsidiary of Jones and the parent company of Infowars, declared bankruptcy in July.
In a case brought by the family members of more than a dozen Sandy Hook victims, a Connecticut jury sentenced Jones and Free Speech Systems to pay almost $1 billion in damages in October.
A Texas jury ruled in August that Jones must pay the parents of a six-year-old boy slain in the Sandy Hook shooting $45.2 million in punitive damages in addition to $4.1 million in compensatory damages. This decision was made in a different case.
Jones has long maintained that the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, which resulted in the deaths of 20 children and six adults, was staged with actors as part of a government scheme to take American firearms. Since then, he has admitted that the shooting took place.
A message requesting a response from Jones’ bankruptcy lawyer was not immediately responded to.
The bankruptcy filing forced a judge to postpone a hearing on the Sandy Hook families’ request to seize Jones and his company’s assets to collect money for the roughly $1.4 billion in damages awarded there, which temporarily halted all proceedings in the Connecticut case. The hearing was scheduled for Friday morning.
Some family members of the 20 children and six adults killed in the school massacre in Texas and Connecticut stated in court that they endured years of harassment and threats from people who bought into the fabrications on Jones’ show.
In testimony, one parent claimed that conspiracy theorists defecated on the grave of his seven-year-old son and threatened to remove the coffin.
The murdered Sandy Hook principal, Dawn Hochsprung’s daughter, Erica Lafferty, claimed she received rape threats in the mail.
Jones has mocked the prizes on his Infowars show, claiming that he can’t afford to pay such huge sums because he only has less than $2 million in his bank account.