(Bloomberg) -- The families of six children and educators killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School, along with an FBI agent who responded to the scene, have sued Alex Jones, the InfoWars host who has claimed the shooting may have been staged. The plaintiffs allege his "paranoid" theories are intended to help Jones sell dietary supplements and gas masks.
Jones deliberately lied about the 2012 massacre to drive traffic to his website and sell products including "open currency" precious metals, "male enhancement" elixirs and radiation-defeating iodine tablets to his millions of viewers and listeners, according to the defamation suit filed in Connecticut Superior Court on Wednesday.
“They deliberately stoke social anxiety and political discord in their listeners, because distrust in government and cultural tribalism motivate those listeners to buy their products," the families said. “Jones exploits his audience by selling them products in line with the paranoid worldview he promotes.”
“Because of Jones and his co-conspirators’ campaign of unconscionable lies, many thousands of people currently believe that our clients faked their loved ones’ deaths,” said the families’ attorney, Matt Blumenthal. “These families have been continually harassed and abused as a result, all while attempting to face fathomless loss.”
In addition to defamation, Jones is being sued for invasion of privacy and intentional infliction of emotional distress. The suit seeks monetary and punitive damages.
A number of Jones’s videos were directly referenced in the lawsuit, including one titled “Sandy Hook was a total false flag” and another titled “Sandy Hook shooting exposed as a fraud.” An article on the InfoWars website, also referenced in the suit, was entitled “College professor says ‘crisis actors’ may have played part if Sandy Hook was indeed a hoax.”
In April, Jones was sued by two other families of victims killed in the Connecticut mass shooting. He is also facing a lawsuit by an individual he accused of being the Parkland, Florida, mass shooter, who had no connection to the attack.
Speaking on his show about the April lawsuits, Jones claimed he had been defamed by the families of those killed in the Sandy Hook attack. “You’re allowed to question things in America,” he said at the time. Lawyers for those plaintiffs said Jones’s remarks were “nothing more than a lie on top of a lie.”
Jones did not immediately return a request for comment about the most recent lawsuit.
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